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Title: Chicago, Satan's Sanctum
Author: Curon, L. O.
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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  "I am to speak of stories you will not believe;
  of beings you cannot love; of foibles for which
  you have no compassion; of feelings in which you
  have no share."--W. MC. PRAED

  By L. O. CURON.




The present Mayor of the City of Chicago was recently re-elected. A large
number of independent voters, deeming one issue a dominant one, which, in
fact, was no issue at all, assisted in again bestowing on him the most
important office in the municipal government.

The legislature had repealed a law under which evil, through the
threatened action of corruptionists in the Council, might have been
visited upon the city. That they were powerless to inflict it had been
demonstrated prior to the repeal of that law and prior to the election.
His competitors entertained, upon the question of the extension of street
car privileges, the same views as his own. Both were men of as great
ability as he, and each had, and still has, a reputation for personal
integrity not surpassed by his. Both were men more mature in years, and
possessed wider business experiences than he. Hence, either of them could
have been safely entrusted with the powers of the executive. Neither of
them, however, could invent, for campaign purposes, so catching, so
powerful, and yet so sophistical, a political phrase as "The streets may
be dirty, but they still belong to the people." To the inventor of that
cry the Mayor owes no small political debt.

It might be inferred from the large vote he received that, as a public
servant, he had been tested and not found wanting. With respect to his
persistent opposition to the extension of street car privileges, without
adequate compensation to the city, and for a period not in excess of
twenty years, it should be said he bravely and manfully did his duty,
following, however, not leading public opinion on that question. All
danger from that source had disappeared when the polls opened in April
last. His competitors stood, on that morning, as honorably pledged to
throttle it, if it again appeared, should either of them be elected, as he

It cannot, however, be said that during his first administration he did
his whole duty. It is a peculiarity of the American people that they
always praise, with exaggeration, an official who partly does his duty, if
the part performed is regarded by them as especially serviceable to the
public. He had the benefit of so much exaggerated praise from a press
that, for nearly two years then last past, had been condemning him, that
some people were charmed into a sort of hysterical admiration for him. He
had the happy faculty of concealing the shortcomings of his first
administration, under cover of a supposedly overshadowing danger. Thereby
he caused his previous record to appear as if free from blemish, and that
he had performed every duty--and performed it well. The very adroit use of
this faculty is the only reason why he received a plurality of votes so
much larger than that of any other candidate nominated on the same ticket
with him for a minor office.

His best friends did not contend that he did his full duty. They now only
hope he will do so. A public official is not entitled to praise, or
thanks, for doing his whole duty. He is elected for the purpose of its
performance. But full performance is so rare that the people seem to be
content if a public servant will do his duty only fairly well.

The vices which prevail in the city, and which grew to their enormous,
threatening, and hideous proportions during the Mayor's first
administration, were known to the people to exist, but were forgotten by
them at the polls, were known to the police, and are still known to them,
and upon no conceivable basis of belief can it be supposed their existence
may not have been known to him, and that he does not know of their
continued existence.

It is for him to utter the command "Stop," and they will cease, in so far
as they can be kept within bounds by his authority. Their absolute
suppression, under existing legislation is, perhaps, impossible, but their
regulation thereunder is not wholly impracticable. Ordinances demanding,
for instance, the imposition of a fine of $200 per day for keeping a house
of ill fame, have, he may say, never been enforced, and have fallen into a
condition of "innocuous desuetude."

The field of observation on matters such as these is too wide to be
entered upon here.

During the Mayor's first term, one of his best friends, in the columns of
his widely circulated newspaper, severely criticised his administration,
but supported him for re-election, and explained in its columns, in
response to an inquiry made by a correspondent just prior to the election,
his reasons for doing so as follows, viz.:

"If Mayor Harrison shall receive the support of the independent voters
because of the good points of his administration, that will show that his
strength consists in doing right, not in doing wrong. It stands to reason
that he would rather have the approval of honest and respectable men than
of the vicious elements of the community. The R---- believes that Mayor
Harrison's present administration from first to last has improved and not
deteriorated. The mayor himself ought to know what are the weak points in
it, and if he has acquired wisdom by experience he should choose his heads
of departments for his second term with a view to curing the evils and
failures of his first term. The relations of the police department with
gambling resorts, all-night saloons and other forms of vice have been
indecent, and probably corrupt. The R---- has frequently urged the
dismissal of Superintendent K---- and the appointment of some better man.
It believes that Mayor Harrison is much to blame in permitting the evil
conditions to continue."

The support he received for re-election came from a very large and
respectable element of the community, but nobody can doubt that he owes
that re-election to the solidarity of the votes of "the vicious elements
of the community!"

The respectable element did not vote with such allies in order that he
should continue to conserve the interests of vice and criminality. The
supporters of the all-night saloons, gambling halls, poker joints, and of
all other nests of iniquity rallied to his assistance to a man. Without
the massed vote of the saloon and its hangers on, he would not have been
again chosen Mayor.

The leading financial paper of this city, non-partisan in its political
views, said on the eve of the election: "An emergency exists. The
government of the City of Chicago is held in contempt not only in Chicago
but wherever Chicago is known. We are losing good citizens, property,
capital, prestige. The very streets, with their filth and dust, repel the
visitor; the servants of the city, whether in administrative or
legislative positions, are objects of suspicion; the scheme of a well
ordered civil service is breaking down; vice receives encouragement as the
price of votes. What wonder that many believe the heart is rotten? But
there is virtue and power enough to change all this. The moral sentiment
and enlightened self interest of the city once aroused and properly guided
would overwhelm all opposition."

Few, if any, evidences have been given out from the City Hall since the
Mayor's re-inauguration tending to show that he proposes voluntarily to
destroy this "contempt." His new comptroller is a worthy successor to the
departed Waller, while the selection for his corporation counsel is all
that could be desired by the most captious citizen. But the vices and
crimes which principally brought, through their unchecked prevalence, that
contempt, find the man, under whom for two years the police force, which
in his friend's language has been "indecent and probably corrupt," again
in its command. Doubtless the army of the vicious rejoices. Certain it is
the community wonders. He will be observed as time passes. May the results
of observation redound to his everlasting credit and success, and to the
benefit of the great city of which he is the executive head!

In the following pages references to the causes of that contempt will be
made. The prurient will find nothing in them to their taste. These
references ought to be of some assistance to the Mayor in finding out
through a properly organized and well officered police force that these
evil causes do exist. Having discovered them, their haunts, and their
aids, if he does not already know of them, will he tolerate them any
longer in this community? Will his continuous Superintendent of Police be
further allowed to throw his kindly protection over them?



CHICAGO--Its Development--Power of Criminal Classes in Its
Government--Pretenses of Reform--Official Satisfaction--Public
Condemnation--Truths as to Power of Criminal Classes.


THE POLICE FORCE--Its Strength--Composition--Power Dominating--Duties of
Defined--Population of Chicago--Nativity of--Police Enemies of Civil
Service--Demoralizing Effect--Tariff on Crime--Rates on Gambling Houses,
Etc.--Penalty for Refusal to Pay--Instances of Police Rates--Method of
Collection--Habits of Policemen--Some Are "Hold Up" Men--Blackmail
Levied--Law Department--Arrests in 1897--Police Fix Boundaries for
Crime--Chief's Testimony--Analysis of Arrests in 1897 in Second Police
Precinct--In City at Large--Division of Fees and Fines With
Magistrates--Police Courts, Corrupt--Cost of Police Force.


ALL NIGHT SALOONS--Character of--Thieves, Thugs and Prostitutes
in--Visitors--Country Buyers, Transients, Delegates, Youth and Old
Age--Women in--Character of--Basement Saloons--Scenes in--Private
Rooms--Scenes in All Night Saloons--Dancing--Music--Morning
Hours--Robberies, Etc., Planned--Girls Entrapped--Young Men
Ruined--Quarrels--Raids--Drinking--Surroundings of--Houses of Ill
Fame--Assignation Houses--Slumming Parties--Fads--Salvation and Volunteer
Army--Houses of Ill Fame--Inmates of--How Managed--Practices
in--Superstitions--Luck Powders--Sources of Supply--Patrons of--Wholesale
House Entertainer--Police Protection--Diseases--Attempts at Reform--People


RE-ELECTION OF MAYOR--False Issue Upon Which Re-elected--Vices in
Chicago--"Blind Pigs"--Protected by Police--Where Situated--How
Conducted--Classes--Drug Stores, Bakeries, Barns--Revenue to
Police--Located Near Universities--Lieutenant of Police Convicted for
Protecting--Cock Fighting--Bucket Shops--Women Dealers--Pool Rooms--Police
Play--Pulling of, Farcical--Views of Chief of Police--Players
in--Landlords--Book Making--Alliance Between, and Police and
Landlords--New York and Chicago--Chicago's Police Force Worst--Hold Up
Men--Methods--Victims--Police Sleep--Mayor's Felicitations, April 11,
1899--Account of Hold Ups, Same Day--Classes of Hold Up Men--Strong Armed
Women--Street Car Conductors Robbed--Ice Chests and Ovens for
Prisons--Hair Clippers--Protection to Criminals--"Safe Blowers'
Union"--Fakes--Panel Houses--Badger Games--Nude Photographs--Obscene
Literature--Confidence Men--Diploma Mills--Gambling--Women's Down Town
Clubs--Sexual Perverts--Opium Joints.


COMMON COUNCIL--Boodlers--Bribers--Council of 1899--Powers of--Misuse
of--Price of Votes--Passage of Boodle Ordinances--Public Works Department
and Bureaus--Illegal Contracts--Street Repairing, Etc.--Civil Service
Commission--History of--Present Board Tools of Mayor--Examination
by--Examples of--Attacks Upon Law--Special Assessments--Asphalt Ring--Fire
Department--County Government--Insane Asylum--Sale of "Cadavers"--
Contracts--Sheriff's Office--Jury Bribers--Judges--Revenue Law--Tax
Dodgers--Town Boards--Coroner's Office--Press Trust--Civic Societies--
Berry Committee Report--Baxter Committee--Opening Testimony--Conclusion.



Chicago, with its world-wide fame as the most marvelous product of
American enterprise among municipal creations in the nineteenth century,
with its wonderful growth, from an Indian trading post in 1837 to a modern
city of the second size in point of population in the year 1898, with the
record of its stupendous strides in reaching its present commercial and
financial position among the commanding trade centers in the world, with
its strong civic pride, its numerous and admirable religious, educational
and charitable institutions both public and private, its cultured
development in literature, music, the arts and sciences, with its
memorable disaster in the great fire of 1871, its speedy recoupment from
that disaster, and its brilliant achievement in the organization and
management of the magnificent "White City," the wide range of the
classified exhibits of which covered the entire and progressive
contributions of mankind to all that goes to make up the civilization of
the age from the earliest period of the commencement of that civilization,
this Chicago, grand, philanthropic and patriotic, suffers, as for years it
has suffered, from the most extensive and persistent advances in political
power, along the lines of their respective crimes, of the criminal
classes, until, from the wealthy bribe-giver to the lowest sneak thief and
sexual pervert, these classes carry elections, corrupt the corruptible in
the Common Council, sway justice in the forum of the lower courts, and
govern the police force until it has become a municipal aid to the
perpetration of crime.

From one administration to the other, the growing power of these lowest
classes of society manifests a stronger hold upon civic administration.
Pretenses of reform are all that, so far, have followed each bi-ennial
election of a Mayor. Here and there, and now and then, gambling houses
are closed, threats against police officers, who follow the well grounded
practice of levying protection rates upon brothels, street walkers,
gambling games of all descriptions, saloons, concert halls, and that
varied combination of evils forming the working machinery of vice, are
given publicity, and while the growth of these monstrous evils cannot but
be known to public officials, both from observation, official reports,
events as chronicled in the daily press, grand jury reports, civic and
State investigations, and verdicts in the courts, a nerveless cowardice
seems to seize each succeeding incumbent of the Executive's office, under
whatever political party's banner he may be called to the chair, and
prevents him from grappling with, and throttling, the ever increasing
power of the combined votaries of all forms of vice and crime.

The Mayor recently congratulated the Common Council in these words, viz:
"The report of the General Superintendent of Police contains assurance for
all classes of citizens that the efficiency, vigilance and zeal that have
characterized this department will permit them to pursue their avocations
without fear of being robbed and assaulted by long and short men. One need
not be exceedingly observant to note that with the approach of winter
comes an annual outbreak of crime. We all noticed evidences of such a
visitation at the advent of the winter just ended, but it should not be
allowed to pass without comment that criminality rarely showed itself
during last fall when it was crushed out with a suddenness and success
that ought to be regarded with pride and satisfaction by every Chicagoan.
There has been no evidence of crime through the recent year as in former
years; the criminals came in the fall, but they were severely taught that
Chicago was an unhealthy clime for them, with the result that they were
wise enough not to linger here long."

This statement, so self-satisfying to the official who made it, so totally
false in fact, so dangerous to the welfare of the people, and so
flippantly interwoven into a public document by one who either knew the
contrary to be the truth, or who knowingly used his official position for
the suppression of truth, if not of crime, is contradicted by the
disclosures made by every organization devoted to the purification of the
public morals, the betterment of civil administration, and the eradication
of the bestial vices so freely and openly flaunted in the faces of a busy
and apparently indifferent people.

Contrast the announcement of the Law Enforcement League with this official
declaration. Said this League, composed of the pastors of churches and
law-abiding people, "Chicago's influence ought to be on the side of purity
and good order, but the fact is that vice and crime are prevalent,
lawlessness is defiant, recreancy to sworn duty is all but universal. The
disorderly saloon is the nesting place of the terrible debaucheries which
disgrace our city. Ordinances and laws which have for their object the
suppression of venality and crime are trampled ruthlessly beneath the feet
of a disloyal and un-American horde. * * * The public mind is profoundly
agitated over the reign of lawlessness and moral disorder. * * * The
co-operation of all decent and respectable people is absolutely imperative
if municipal government is to be transferred from the baser to the better
element. * * * We have a right to demand that lawlessness shall cease;
that gang rule shall be broken; that partisan politics shall be made
subsidiary to municipal righteousness; that the all but omnipotent power
of the disorderly shall be broken; that the carnival of crime which curses
Chicago shall end; that the law breakers, crime makers and bribe-takers
shall be adequately punished and that the fair name of this imperial city
shall be redeemed from the reproach of blackmail, wanton immorality and
widespread disorder."

A noted divine said recently, "I believe that this city is to be the
greatest city of this continent and of the world. I believe that Chicago
is the devil's headquarters, and I think it is not far from the City Hall.
If our own eyes could be fully opened we would see there infinite
indecencies, bum politicians, ward workers, heel tappers, men who are the
devil's own and delivered body and soul to do his bidding."

Another said, "Saloons and all other haunts of vice are wide open, as they
have never been before in the city's history."

A distinguished lawyer, speaking before the Christian Convention recently
held in this city, said, "Scourge off and out of your temples the
political hyenas that prey on the municipal body politic, that fatten on
the scarlet woman's wages of sin, that share the gambler's plunder and the
blind pig's profits."

Another eminent divine declared at this meeting, "He knew that men have
been kept from coming to, and investing in, Chicago because our morality
is so low."

Still another divine declared at the same meeting, "But when in one night
five homes in the block in which I live--and I moved there because it was
the safest place in the city--are robbed, and, within the same week, three
men are held up within two blocks, the conditions are serious." Serious,
indeed, they are, despite assurances of protection by the police force
emanating from the highest official authority!

A few plain truths as to the utter prostitution of the civil authorities
to the power of the criminal classes in Chicago, and as to the filthiness
of those classes, are attempted to be given in the following pages. They
may assist in arousing the people to a keen sense of their duty as
citizens to demand from a new administration a rigid enforcement of the
law by public officers, and that these officers shall become the servants
of the people rather than remain the slaves, as well as the persecutors
for private gain, of the riffraff of the community.



The Police Force of the City of Chicago consisted on December 31st, 1897,
of 3,594 men, of which number 2,298 were first-class patrolmen, the
remainder being officers, sergeants, clerks, drivers and patrol-wagon men.
The number of square miles of territory embraced within the city limits
was, and is, 186.4.

The force is composed largely of men of one nationality or of their
descendants. A large majority affiliates with the same church. Prior to
the passage of the civil service law in 1895, each bi-ennial
administration made the force its own valuable mine in which veins of rich
rewards for its friends and political workers were found. To this force
the aldermanic supporters of the administration attached their henchmen
and ward heelers, and these, in turn, as public officers, looked after the
political welfare of their backers and of the administration these backers
supported. Thus, the political complexion of the force was liable to
change every two years. Notwithstanding the presence of a civil service
law on the statute books under which the force is now supposed to have
been re-organized and re-appointed, its political complexion remains the
same. The organization is dominated by the political party which alone
uses the distinctive title of "Tammany." The civil service law has been
attacked, in behalf of this public force, by officials who were sworn to
sustain it, until through their repeated assaults upon it, its
administration is looked upon as farcical, and its administrators as its
most cunning and relentless foes.

The duties of the police force are clearly defined in the city charter.
Generally, that instrument provides, "The police shall devote their time
and attention to the discharge of the duties of their stations according
to the laws and ordinances of the city and the rules and regulations of
the department of police, and it shall be their duty, to the best of their
ability, to preserve order, peace and quiet, and enforce the laws and
ordinances throughout the city."

According to the school census of 1898, the population of Chicago was then
1,851,588. This population is one of the most polyglot of any city in the
world. Each modern language is spoken by some one class of its people.

The population born of American born parents exceeds that of any other
nativity, being in round numbers 486,000, while the Germans, born of
German born parents, and Germans born in Germany, number in round figures
468,000. Of the Irish 131,000 are American born of Irish parents; born in
Ireland, 104,000, making a total of 235,000. These are the largest
classes, by nativity, of its people, and with the proverbial ability of
the latter nationality to govern and "get there" it supplies the police
force with the largest quota of men, year after year.

During the years 1897 and 1898 this force, and every man seeking to become
a member of it, was taught by city officials, and by none more
energetically than by the chief law officer of the city administration,
that the civil service law was an especial enemy of theirs, inasmuch as it
abridged their privileges and immunities as citizens of the United States,
and was, therefore, a menace to their rights, wholly unwarranted by the
Constitution of the United States.

It was accordingly attacked upon that ground by the officers sworn to
enforce it, and, since the establishment of its validity by the highest
courts in the land, its provisions are constantly sought, by them, to be
avoided and defeated.

The efforts of the commissioners to enforce it were commented on in an
official message by the city's Executive, as if such efforts were in fact
being made, and were part and parcel of an administrative policy; while,
in practice, no possible legal device or illegal invention was allowed to
fail of application by municipal officials to destroy its commands, even
by its commissioners, who announced themselves as its greatest devotees.
No more demoralizing example could have been set before the police force
than the acts of the higher authorities. Such acts have produced the
inevitable result, that, as such higher authorities saw fit to openly
throttle a law they were sworn to enforce, the rank and file of the police
force itself inferred that they, too, could seek to evade, and refuse to
execute, all laws and ordinances which in their judgment affected the
suppression of crime.

Consequently, that force has become demoralized and corrupt, openly
levying a tariff for revenue and official protection upon all classes of
wrong-doers, below those who commit felonious crimes of the highest grade,
and when the rates are not promptly paid by the protected classes, they
are coerced by arrest into the payment of fines and fees for division
between the justices and the officers. It is a well known fact that a
schedule of prices prevails for police protection, which prices must be
paid for that protection. Gambling houses pay from $50.00 per month
upwards; panel and badger games, $35.00 to $50.00; music halls with saloon
and private room attachments, $100.00; houses of ill fame, from $50.00
upwards, according to the number of inmates at so much per capita; cigar
store and barber shop gambling games, $10.00; "blind pigs," the unlicensed
vendors of liquors, $10.00 to $30.00, and with permission to gamble,
$30.00 to $50.00; crap games, $10.00 to $25.00; opium and Chinese joints,
$10.00 to $25.00; drug store "blind pigs," $10.00 to $30.00, and prize
fights and cocking mains, a percentage of the gate receipts--usually

Whenever a gambling house refuses to pay it is immediately pulled. These
rates of police blackmail and of protective tariff have been sworn to
before public investigations, and inquiry trials, as imposed and
collected. The press has repeatedly commented upon these frightfully cruel
persecutions, reeking with the infamy of the participation by public
servants in a division of the fetid proceeds of the procuress, of the
landlady, of her unfortunate slave, the harlot; of the skin gambler, the
clock swindlers and tape gamesters, and of the operators of massage
parlors, both male and female.

In one case, tried before the Criminal Court of Cook County, a lieutenant
of the police force was convicted of the crime of exacting money from the
owner of a "blind pig" paid to him by the owner for protection in his
unlawful occupation. Going back a few years, during the World's Fair
period, as high as $2,000, it is said in public print, was paid for
similar protection in a single instance.

The officer in charge of a given precinct makes the collections, retains
his percentage, passes the remainder on to his next superior, who
withholds his rake-off, and so on until the net profit reaches the highest
police official. A leading city newspaper, in a caustic editorial,
declared that "in Chicago protection means the privilege to commit crime
upon the payment of a sum of money to the police. It has ceased to mean
that the citizen will be guarded against the acts of criminals." So
thoroughly recreant to duty have some of the ranking officers of this
force become, that one of the oldest captains when asked why he did not
close, in his district, certain notorious saloons where depraved women
robbed strangers in wine rooms, replied that "some people would steal in
the churches, and you might as well close churches as close the saloons
for that reason."

Patrolmen in uniform are found in dives playing cards; and in others
sleeping during the hours of their supposed presence on their beats. They
know the women of the town, the street walkers in the territory they
patrol, the keepers of every vile joint, where the most depraved practices
are indulged in, the houses of ill fame, high-priced and low-priced, the
"Nigger," Japanese, Chinese and mixed bagnios, the policy shops, fences
and schools for thieves.

All these vice mills and their operators contribute to the policemen's
demand, and thus obtain permission to carry on, in daylight, and at
night-time, their nefarious, lecherous and disgusting crimes and orgies.

One officer gambled in a saloon with a citizen, lost his money,
overpowered the citizen, recovered his lost money and then robbed his

In broad daylight an officer held up a citizen and robbed him of his money
and valuables. When the Chief of Police had this case called to his
attention before a legislative investigating committee, he answered, "I
tried that man yesterday. He got on the police department ten years ago,
and he always had a reputation of being a good officer, and the other
morning he had been drinking some, and, like everything else, became a
little indiscreet and started out to hold up a man and got hold of a few
dollars in that way, and under the impression, very likely, that he would
never be discovered, and, like everybody else, with his good record in the
past, he was discharged and reinstated, because many people vouched for
him, and all said he was an excellent officer, but he stepped by the
wayside and fell, and we had him arrested and discharged."

Whether the many people who so generously interceded with the Chief of
Police for the retention of a thief as a member of his force were that
thief's fellow pals and hold-up men, was not disclosed; but it may be said
without hazard, that they were not reputable men--if they had any
existence at all other than in the imagination, and as part of the
bewildering policy of an incapable Chief.

Methods of levying blackmail upon other than the disreputable classes, but
reaching through them, upwards and beyond them, are not only countenanced,
but advised by superior officials and approved by the city's highest

On the 5th of November, 1897, a practical stranger in the city was given
the following letter, signed by the Chief of Police, viz.:


    The police department is about to issue a history for the benefit of
    their relief fund. Kindly make all checks payable to W. V. M., East
    Chicago Avenue Station, and any favors shown the bearer will be
    appreciated by,

        Yours truly,"

This stranger had been denounced through the press as a fraud and a
schemer, who had been arrested in other cities for obtaining money under
false pretenses, which facts were known to the Chief of Police when his
letter of recommendation was written. The stranger was to receive a
commission of twenty-five per cent on all subscriptions obtained by him,
and the treasurer of the fund, who was selected with the approval of the
Chief, the Mayor, and his principal political satellite, ten per cent.
Some $8,000 were collected under this scheme, one large railroad
corporation subscribing $1,000 and a noted Board of Trade operator $500.
Whence the remainder came rests in conjecture, with a well defined belief
that noted gamblers, and keepers of houses of ill fame, were contributors
to it.

A legislative committee's inquiries prevented the consummation of the
scheme, but, owing to the speedy departure from the city of the treasurer,
the source of the remaining subscriptions could not be inquired into.

As a cover to the purposes of this scheme, it was proposed to place these
collections to the credit of the Policemen's Benevolent Association Fund
of Chicago, which, by reason of the failure of a bank, whose officials are
now under indictment for the misappropriation of public funds other than
those of this association, had become badly impaired. This proposal
followed the appointment of the legislative committee of investigation, by
way of preparation to conceal the real purpose of the swindle. That
association repudiated the plan.

The Chief of Police was asked by the committee of investigation whether he
thought it was the proper thing for him, as Chief of Police of Chicago,
"to give to a man to go out among business men, corporations and
manufacturing establishments of the city a letter telling them that
everything this man did and said you would be responsible for, if you knew
he had been indicted and arrested in different cities of the United States
for defrauding the people out of money on this same identical scheme?" He
answered, "I don't believe it." Immediately he was asked, "Have you heard
A. was arrested a number of times?" and in reply said, "I read in the
newspapers that he was arrested and had trouble in Detroit." Again he was
asked whether A. had given him any information as to the number of times
he had been arrested for getting money on false pretenses, and his answer
was, "I can give you some information on that subject."

These extracts from the sworn testimony of this official, speak in no
commendatory manner of his sense of official responsibility. They point to
a mind deadened to all sense of the duties of his position; they elevate
him before his force as a conspicuous example for them to follow, in his
disregard of the principles of official decency. In themselves they urge
upon that force, by their silent influence, an emulation of such a
blackmailing course, even though in its accomplishment the assistance of a
swindler is required, and deliberately accepted.

A brother of the Chief, a member of the detective force, was frequently
found in poolrooms, assisting in their management, and yet the Chief seems
to have been unable to acquire the knowledge that poolrooms were running
wide open throughout the city. He probably knew it as an individual. In
response to a question as to his information on this subject he answered,
that no particular complaints were made--"the newspaper boys often came
around and said there was pool selling going on at different places," and
he presumed "if a desperate effort had been made to look that kind of
thing up, we might have possibly been successful." More open admissions of
official incompetency it would, perhaps, be difficult to make, and no more
flagrant instances could be cited of official degeneracy than are these
extracts from the sworn testimony of a defiant and dangerous public

In the attack on the Police Pension Fund, which was established under an
act of the legislature for the benefit of an officer who shall have
reached the age of fifty years, and who shall have served at reaching that
age for twenty years on the force, then be retired with a yearly pension
equal to one-half of the salary attached to the rank which he may have
held for one year next preceding the expiration of his term of twenty
years, or who shall have become physically disabled in the performance of
his duty, there was manifested a degree of moral irresponsibility, if not
of criminality, and a blind adherence to partisanship in defiance of the
laws, seldom found in the history of any municipal corporation, and
unmatched even by the developments of the Lexow committee of New York
City, in matters of a kindred character, inquired into by that committee.

For the sake of creating vacancies in the ranks of the police force, to be
filled by appointments to be made by the Chief in defiance of the civil
service law, and while that law was running the gauntlet of every
conceivable attack, both open and covert, which could be made upon it by
every department of the city's administration, and by none more virulently
than by the Law Department, a plan was devised and put into execution
whereby officers of all ranks, after years of police service and
experience and in strong physical condition willing and anxious to remain
in their positions, were retired from the force against their protest,
merely to make way for the substitution of new appointees--the political
friends of the Chief and his superior. Men with good records and
physically able to perform their duties were thus forced upon the rolls as
pensioners, to deplete a fund, sacred as a trust, not only for the benefit
of the living and necessitous pensioners, but also for the widows of the
men who had lost their lives in the service and the wives and children of
those who had died after ten years of police duty. One effect, as to the
standing of this fund, was to reduce the balance on hand January 1, 1897,
from $16,837 to $4,543 December 31st, 1897. Thus over $10,000 was raided,
seized and forced upon unwilling pensioners, "still able bodied and
anxious to retain their positions at their full salaries." A more
contemptible exercise of political power and administrative robbery could
not well be imagined.

The omissions of the police force in the enforcement of the laws, their
acts of commission in evading, attacking and disregarding others,
especially those relating to all night saloons, the source of most of the
arrests for disorderly conduct, where wantonness is displayed,
assignations are arranged, drunkenness aided and brawls engendered, are
blamable, not so much upon the patrolmen, as upon their superior officers.
The patrolmen do as they are told. They report infractions of the law, or
not, according to their instructions. Their eyes are opened or closed, as
the "wink is tipped" to them from above. The men are brave in moments of
danger, fearless in rescuing the inmates of burning buildings, risking
their lives in stopping runaway horses, tender in caring for lost
children, or destitute persons, both men and women, and faithful in the
performance of their duties as members of the ambulance corps.

During the year 1897 one hundred and eighty were injured while on duty,
and of this number forty-seven were on service in the first precinct,
embracing the business district, the thoroughfares of which are the most
crowded and in which the heaviest fires happen, while only seven were
injured in the second precinct along the "levee"--the tough precinct.
Given proper management, strict discipline and law abiding example, it
could be made, and ought to be made, one of the "finest" forces in the
world. Thugs and thieves, within the past two years, through the
manipulation of the civil service law, have been admitted to its ranks, to
its everlasting disgrace and that of the usurped appointing power.

The number of arrests in 1897 for those offences from the perpetrators of
which the police are charged with receiving protection money, was less
than in any of the previous years since 1895, notwithstanding the increase
in population, according to the school census, from 1,616,635 in 1896, to
1,851,588 in 1898, an increase in round numbers of 234,000.

The following is the number of arrests for the years 1894, 1895, 1896 and
1897 for offences as named, viz.:

                                    1894.   1895.   1896.   1897.

  Cock fighting                     .....     156      69   .....

  Decoy to gambling houses          .....   .....   .....   .....

  Disorderly                       49,072  44,450  50,641  45,844

  Inmates of assignation houses        53      53      92      14

  Inmates of disorderly houses         21     105     205     181

  Inmates of gambling houses          879   1,802   2,535     725

  Inmates of houses of ill fame     2,516   2,894   5,547   1,531

  Inmates of opium dens               943   1,112     528     253

  Keeping assignation houses           17       5      15      19

  Keeping disorderly houses            39      28      30     139

  Keeping gaming houses               238     300     310     155

  Keeping houses of ill fame          174     210     241     648

  Robbery                           1,072   1,099   1,083   1,200

  Violation saloon ordinance          717   1,283   1,359     559

In 1897, as compared with 1896, there was a decrease of 78 in the number
of arrests of inmates of assignation houses, 24 of the inmates of
disorderly houses, 1,810 of the inmates of gambling houses, 4,016 of the
inmates of houses of ill fame, 275 of the inmates of opium dens, 155 of
the keepers of gaming houses, and 800 for violation of saloon ordinances.
That these offenses had not decreased in point of perpetration is a fact,
patent to observation and well known to the people. On the other hand, the
arrests for keeping disorderly houses increased 109, and for keeping
houses of ill fame 407. In the year 1896, when some effort was made to
keep the police out of politics, the total arrests were 13,167 more than
in 1897, when the police force had passed into the hands of a political
machine, which sought to erase the application of the civil law to its
government. In 1896 the inmates suffered arrest, but in 1897 the policy of
arresting fewer inmates and more keepers, except of gaming houses, seems
to have been inaugurated. "The keepers" are more able to pay than the
inmates. For every dollar collected from inmates, the keepers are able to
pay ten, or fifty dollars if necessary. From these figures it is clear
that the practice of assessments for police protection was maintained
principally against keepers in 1897, and that few inmates, comparatively,
refused to pay in that year, while a large number of keepers of immoral
and gambling houses were tardy in their payments, consequently, the former
were not arrested, while the latter were.

What the figures for the year 1898 will reveal is as yet unknown.

Not only is crime thus tolerated by the police, but its chief officials
assume, also, to define the boundaries of the districts in which it may be
freely and safely perpetrated.

The Chief of Police, testifying before a legislative investigating
committee, said: "Now, any fellow who wants to bet on the races or
anything of that sort cannot be allowed to do so this side of Jackson
street, because we don't want this section of the town polluted with this
class of things. We want the boys who have an inclination to bet on horse
races to go south."

Q. What have you got against the people south of Jackson street?

A. I like them.

Q. Is that the reason you wanted that stuff to go down there?

A. Things are very lively in the lower part of the town, everything has a
thrifty appearance, and everything----

Q. You mean south of Jackson street?

A. North of Jackson--and things up south of Jackson are virtually
dead--there is nothing going on at all, and the stores are all empty.
There is nothing doing, and the property, is depreciating in value, and
the object was to liven things up a little bit.

That part of the city south of Jackson boulevard to Sixteenth street, and
from State street on the east to the river on the west, embraces the tough
part of the second precinct of the second police district. In the year
1897 of the total number of arrests of women and girls in the city, 17,624
in number, 8,957, or over 50 per cent, were, as the police term it, "run
in" from this police district. How often the same women were arrested and
re-arrested it is impossible to say, or whether they were "pinched"
oftener than once in the same night. Of this latter number 7,364 were
discharged by the magistrates, but the larger number contributed one
dollar each to the justice for signing a bail bond for their appearance
for trial. In addition, 300 women, known as "women lodgers," were also
"run in" in this district in 1897. Of these unfortunates 1,746 were fined;
140 held to the criminal court; 193 released on peace bonds; 209 sent to
the house of correction; 10 held as witnesses; 10 were insane; 7
destitute, and 23 were sick and sent to the hospital. Of this total number
of arrests of women and women lodgers, 9,257 in number, in this police
district in 1897, only 2,288, or about 39 per cent were convicted of
offenses by police magistrates, while 61 per cent of them were discharged.

Of the total number of persons arrested throughout the city in 1897,
83,680 in number, 55,020 were discharged by the police courts, 18,017 were
fined, 4,138 held on criminal charges, and 2,947 bound over to keep the
peace. The remainder were sent to various homes, refuges, asylums and
humane societies. Over 50 per cent of those arrested were discharged. The
percentage of those who furnished bail for their appearance, it is
difficult to ascertain. That the practice exists is too well known to be
proven, that a division of these bail bond fees is made between the
magistrate and the police; the police furnishing the victims, the straw
bailor his signature to, and the justice his approval of, the bond. The
latter collects his fee and divides with the officers, while the straw
bailor exacts his compensation in proportion to the ability of the victim
to pay, then hands over a share to the arresting officers.

That such persecution should exist in a civilized community is a disgrace
to its civilization, that public officers should, for one moment, be
permitted to engage in such hideous traffic in the liberties of their
fellows, is a scandal upon the administration of justice, and that
executive officers of the law, sworn to its enforcement, should be
ignorant of the infamy of such arrests, or knowingly permit them to be
made, is malfeasance in office, and subversion of civil rights.

The portion of the fines (not by statute appropriated for other purposes)
assessed upon, and collected from, this class of unfortunates by the
justices, is required by the ordinances to be paid to the city at the
close of each and every month, and is to be apportioned by the city
authorities as the statutes and ordinances require. The salaries of the
police magistrates are fixed by agreement with the city. These magistrates
are chosen bi-ennially after the election of a Mayor, by that officer,
from the appointed justices of the peace, and are generally of the same
political faith as is the appointing authority. The system is a blot upon
the impartial administration of justice. It has become a byword among the
people as a malodorous cesspool.

From the evidence heard before a legislative committee, that committee
reported "that the present system of justice, or police courts, as run, is
a disgrace to the present civilization. It shows that justice courts will
open in the night time, policemen will go out and drag in men and women,
100 and 200, and even more at a time; that they are refused a trial at
night, required to give a bond for which the justice charges them one
dollar; that professional bondsmen are in attendance who will collect
another dollar, and oftentimes much more, from the poor unfortunate to go
on his or her bond until morning, thus making several hundred dollars
ofttimes in a night to the police justices and other officers connected
with the court, and this is done, as your committee believe, from the
evidence, for the purpose of making money for the police justice, the
professional bondsman, and the police officer in charge of the arrest."

These magistrates are required to report at the "close of each day's
business," but their night arrests are construed by them as not following
within the definition of "a day's business." The fees arising from them
are not, therefore, reported.

Civic bodies have denounced in the bitterest terms the evils of this
system, and in a recent mayoralty message to the Common Council, in itself
the hotbed of boodleism, it is said, "The justice shop system with all its
necessarily attendant scandals is about to be wiped out."

That desirable result awaits legislative action. The general assembly, if
it has any respect for human rights, for commendable municipal government,
for the performance of its sworn duty, will lay aside the struggle in
legislative halls for political ascendancy, and hasten the day when this
festering sore shall have applied to it an instrument of eradication which
it alone can wield. It is proper to add that since the foregoing lines
were written the night fees are better accounted for, under an agreement
between the magistrates and the city by which the magistrates' salaries
are raised, as an inducement to them to be honest.

The appropriations for the year 1897, for the maintenance of the police
force, amounted to $3,356,910. Other sources of income amounted to

The salary warrants drawn against this fund amounted to $3,290,296.26; for
other expenses, $167,369.63, making a total of warrants drawn of
$3,457,665.89, leaving a deficit of $83,392.84.

The total income of the city for the year 1897 from saloon licenses was
about $3,000,000. The saloons are, therefore, the policemen's great
financial friends in more ways than one, and largely defray the expenses
of the department.



The breeding ground of disorder and crime is to be found in the all night

Despite the stringent ordinances prohibiting the "open door" after
midnight, in the most dissolute districts throughout the city, along the
streets and avenues of the north, west and south divisions, under ground
and on its surface, these dens invite the depraved of both sexes to enter,
remain, dissipate and carouse through the night. Murders, robberies and
assaults are the necessary outcome of the unlimited drinking, the ribald
language, the senseless jealousies, and the heated passions of the motley
crowds which are at all times the fascinated patrons of these joints. A
more rigid rule has recently been applied to the larger of the down town,
or business district, basement saloons. Music is prohibited, and the
closing midnight hour respected. These are but the depots for the all
night saloons. When they close, the gathered crowds of dissolute women
dissolve and betake themselves to the after midnight haunts, there to
continue their calling--the solicitation of male visitors for drinks,
meals and the ultimate purpose of their solicitation--prostitution. The
male frequenters of these resorts belong to all classes of society. The
"steady" visitors are thieves, thugs, pickpockets, gamblers, variety
actors, "rounders," that large and constantly growing class in great
cities which is ceaselessly observing the shady side of life, "seeing the
elephant," and not infrequently becoming intimately acquainted with the
beast, and pimps, who fatten upon the sinful earnings of abandoned women,
whose fondness for their masters increases in proportion to the violence
the masters visit upon their slaves. The transient custom is comprised of
not only the old rounder, but also of those of younger experience,
bursting, or not far advanced, into manhood; those who with a wide
knowledge of the ways and wickedness of the world, more than their years
warrant, are out for a "good time;" the observer of those ways; the
"chiels" who are among them taking notes; clerks, cabmen and their
"hauls;" the country buyer under the guidance of the entertainer of the
wholesale house with whom the buyer is dealing; the delegates to
conventions, out to view the town; the passer through the burg who has
heard of the lights and shadows of Chicago; the swallow-tailed youth, and
the middle-aged gentleman fresh from escorting to her home the virtuous
female companion of the evening's entertainment, the melodrama, the opera,
or the social function. The women range from the one who has just
"started out" to the most despicable and depraved member of the sex. The
former is the observed of all observers, the object of conspicuous
attention, and a veritable prize to be won by the most dashing attack and
the most liberal offer. She is under the tuition of her female guide, who
instructs her "what she has to do that she may not be raw in her

The basement saloons in the down town district with their brilliant
electric lighting equipment, their reflecting mirrors and hardwood
finishings, combine, in most instances, the facilities of the rum shop and
the restaurant.

Here, from noon hour of the day until midnight, come and go the "sporty"
women, who have not yet reached the lower degree of a brothel, the
"roomers," "the cruisers" of the street, the so-called keepers of manicure
parlors, baths and dressmaking establishments, all bent upon a "mash" in
its broadest sense, or a "pick up" of any male greenhorn, or sport, who
can be ensnared by their wiles. Maintaining a semblance of decorum, they
pass the earlier hours of the evening in drinking with the "guests" and
in flitting about from table to table, with which each place is abundantly
supplied. The conversation is loud, and at times boisterous. Its subject
matter is beyond repetition in polite circles. Lecherous glances,
libidinous gestures, open invitations, characterize the behavior of the
audience. Sometimes personal liberties are attempted, but invariably
suppressed by the management. From the private rooms come sounds of
hilarity, and the intermixture of words of protest, inducement and
vulgarity. The withdrawals of couples are marked, and their early return
and ruffled appearance suggest patronage of not distant "hotels," where no
questions are asked. Generally, as the midnight hour approaches, the crowd
decreases, signs of intoxication increase, and the exodus to the all night
resorts is about completed as that hour is struck.

When the downtown basement resorts close, the profitable work of the all
night joints commences. The attendants in them are joined by squads from
the more pretentious and less favored half-night competitors. These
resorts, as a rule, are all equipped with private rooms, and many of
them, in summer, have a so-called garden attached. Some have vaudeville
performances to attract crowds, which end after the midnight hour. Many
have a "Ladies' Entrance," but most visitors pass through the bar to the
sitting room beyond. The so-called music of the cracked piano and strident
male voices now commences, and the hat is passed around by the artists and
performers, for contributions for payment for their services, the "house"
paying nothing for such services, but permitting the artists to "work" the
crowd. Boys of sixteen, and under, join in the gaieties as buck, wing and
jig dancers, and also pass the hat. As the hours lengthen, as the liquor
begins its effect, freedom of action enlarges, and restraint is removed.
Those attitudes at table indicative of respectability are abandoned for
others hinting at the widest license, or actually, which is not
infrequently the case, illustrating that license, so far as familiarities
of the person are concerned. The dance begins, with all its contortions of
the body derived from the couche-couchee exhibitions of the World's Fair
times, enlarged upon by the grossness of the two-step waltz of the slums.
Strolling bands of negro musicians, scraping the violin and strumming the
guitar and mandolin, or the home orchestra, composed of these dusky
minstrels, add their alleged harmonies to the occasion, and, with nasal
expression, roll of coon songs in the popular rag time, with their
intimations of free love, warmth of passion and disregard of moral
teachings. At times, with assumed pathos and mock dignity they warble a
sentimental song with some allusion to "Mother," "Home," or "Just Tell
Them That You Saw Me." The spree goes on, with fresh additions from the
bagnios. Women with the most repulsive signs of prolonged dissipation, of
advanced disease, with the upper parts of the body exposed, not perhaps
more than is customary at a fashionable charity ball, join in with
salacious abandon. These women, in the phrase of the Bard of Avon, belong
to the class of the "custom shrunk," of one of whom a Roman satirist

  "* * * but now,
   That life is flagging at the goal, and like
   An unstrung lute, her limbs are out of tune,
   She is become so lavish of her presence,
   That being daily swallowed by men's eyes
   They surfeit at the sight.
   She's grown companion to the common streets--
   Want her who will, a stater, a three obolo piece,
   Or a mere draught of wine, brings her to hand!
   Nay! place a silver stiver in your palm,
   And, shocking tameness! She will stoop forthwith
   To pick it out."

As the morning hours draw nigh blear-eyed men and women in all stages of
intoxication, creep to their holes to sleep away the day for a renewal of
their orgies when darkness again falls.

In these all night saloons robberies and burglaries are planned, and
hold-ups arranged for. To them young girls are enticed when homeward bound
from summer gardens and midwinter balls. Plans are laid for their ruin
through drink, and the excitement of an experience new to them, which hide
from their view all danger signals. Women are beaten and stabbed in them.
Here young men begin their careers of dissipation, of lechery, and,
perhaps, of crime, amid surroundings so contrary to the examples of home
life, that before they are aware of it, they have become hopelessly
enamored of what is termed a sporting life.

The flippantly spoken word provokes a heated reply, a jealous woman,
surcharged with drink, precipitates a squabble that swells into a free
fight, a free fight brings an indiscriminate firing of revolvers, and the
consequent death--the murder--of some of the rioters follows. Then, and
not until then, do the police raid the place. For a few weeks it is kept
under the ban, but gradually the law's grip is relaxed, signs of the old
life revive, and soon the same scenes made more joyous and boisterous at
the "new opening" are again enacted, to run the same course until another
felony is committed, and another temporary closing of the doors enforced.

That the all night saloon where such depravity is permitted to hold sway
is a menace to the peace, the sobriety, and the safety of the community,
is a self evident proposition.

A minister in one of his sermons said, "The police wink when you call
their attention to the fact that hundreds of saloons are running wide open
all night. It is after midnight that the majority of the crimes are
committed, and yet these places are allowed to run after hours, and have
the protection of the police."

The beardless boy and the habitual drunkard are, alike, supplied with
drink without question. The former is flattered by being called "a dead
game sport," and the latter tickled with the oft-bestowed title of "old

Many of these notorious dens are located in the midst of a forest of
houses of ill fame. The depraved inmates of these houses, partly clad, are
the most indecent visitors to the all night saloons. Perched upon the bar,
or peering out from the private wine rooms, they shout their infamous
language at the visitors, with invitations to indulgence in the most
bestial of practices.

Slumming parties, composed of respectable men and women whose morbid
curiosity has been aroused by tales of the inconceivable vices forming the
night-life of the demi-monde, are not infrequently found "going down the
line" dropping into the houses of prostitution, viewing the bar, the
private rooms, the dance hall, the crap games and the vicious
surroundings of the all night pest holes. To slum has, in a measure,
become a fashionable fad. Its purpose is, not to carry into these haunts
the example of a better life, but to cater to a dangerous spirit of
inquiry, upon the principle that excitement, even though it be found in
the midst of the garbage boxes of vice, is relished now and then by the
best of mankind. The only indication of a world outside, in which
Christian principles prevail, is occasionally to be found, when some of
the women garbed in the simple uniform of either the Salvation or
Volunteer Army, engaged in rescue work, or in scattering a hopeful word,
through the medium of their publications, pass among the crowd, receiving
in most instances respectful attention, and, at times, but rarely, a jeer
from some drunken sot or wrecked woman.

The houses of ill fame, whose stained glass windows with suggestive female
figures in the nude advertise the abode of the scarlet woman, are as
luxuriously furnished as is the home of the wealthy and respectable
citizen. These "creatures of sale," as Shakespeare puts it, are as
clearly distinguished in public as members of the demi-monde, as if the
Julian laws were in operation in Chicago. In early Rome, under these laws,
the courtesan was compelled to dye her hair blue or yellow. Like the
Grecian courtesan whose distinctive mark of her calling was blonde hair,
the strumpet of today generally favors a fashion coming down from the past
ages. The passer-by of these abodes of sensuality is invited by open
solicitation or unmistakable gesture to enter them, especially by the more
degraded of the women. A studied decorum is maintained in some of the
parlors of the older establishments, presided over by a proprietress
advanced in years, plentiful in wealth, and dictatorial in management.
Harsh rules are prescribed for the maintenance of the condition of slavery
into which the girls have fallen. Debts to the house tie them to it by
bands too strong to be easily broken, in what are termed the aristocratic
branches of this nefarious trade. These women are none the less free from
indulgence in unnatural practices than are those of houses of reputed
lower degrees of depravity. White and colored alike revel in the same
scenes of carnality which, fragments of history state, prevailed in the
declining days of Rome and of Greece. The inmates of the lowest of these
houses, both in dress, or in the absence of it, and in deportment, follow
the habits of the Dicteriades, or low down prostitutes, of Piræus in the
time of Pericles. Their appearance in the reception parlors in a state of
nudity, and their filthiness in practice is a renewal of the habits of the
Lesbian lovers of the fifth century; or of the flute players of the
Athenian banquets, accounts of whose indecent dancing and depraved ways
are found in the most erotic chapters in ancient literature. From them
come the terms applying to the devotees in these days of sodomitic
indulgence, forming part of the slang of the neighborhood where they live
a debauched and beastly existence.

The superstitions of the Grecian and Roman courtesan are carried into the
beliefs of those of modern days. What the philters or love charms were to
the former, luck powders are to the latter. They are known along the levee
as "Sally White's Brand" and "Sally White's Mixed Luck." The former is
regarded as particularly lucky. It is a compound of "Sally's" own
prescription, and is secretly sprinkled on the floor, at stated periods,
as luck is sought after, or is burned in a room and the fumes inhaled. The
latter is a mixture of perfumed oils and is used in the bath. The women
are the frequent buyers of Sally's prescriptions, avoiding purchasing on a

The sources from which come the supply to the ranks of courtesans, whether
inmates of the aristocratic, the middle, or the lowest grades of their
temples of vice, are many, various and damnable. Aside from the mere
desire to gratify passion, which medical writers maintain constitutes but
a small percentage of those who join the army of prostitutes, attributable
to an innate sense of virtue in the modern woman, cabmen, in spite of the
municipal ordinances, have been known to drive women entering the city to
these brothels on the pretext they were hotels. The procuress is at work
all the while.

  "Thou hold'st a place for which the paind'st fiend
   Of hell would not in reputation change.
   Thou art the damned doorkeeper to every
   Coistril that comes inquiring for his Tib;
   To the choleric fisting of every rogue
   Thy ear is liable; thy food is such
   As hath been belched on by infected lungs."

The department stores, in which starvation wages are paid to girls and
women, who are subjected to the attentions of designing men, invited to
lunch, induced to drink; whose love for dress and whose vanity are worked
upon; those whose want of education in the relations of the sexes brings
about their speedy fall; the servant turned out from her employment ruined
by her employer or his son; the seamstress; the victims of unhappy
marriages and cruel homes; those compelled by poverty or necessity, and
who support dependent relatives; the "chippies" of modern days; the
massage parlor graduates; all contribute their distressed quotas to this
ever increasing tribe of prostitutes.

It gathers in recruits from the overflow of the assignation houses, which
are scattered over this city in astonishing profusion. They are found in
boulevard castles and in back alley huts. They do not differ in character
from those of all cities. Through them come the cast-off women, who,
having satisfied the temporary infatuation of their seducers, find
themselves victims of false promises, and the graduates from homes wrecked
by the discovery of their daylight intrigues. So relentless a warfare is
waged upon these private, and in some instances most exclusive, resorts,
by the lynx-eyed police, that in the year 1897, nineteen keepers of such
places were arrested! Some improvement is noticeable in their suppression
from the fact that in 1894 seventeen, in 1895 five, and in 1896 fifteen
keepers were arrested! Interference with this style of accommodation is,
therefore, possible in Chicago, at or about the time of the arrival of the

Singular to say there are moralists who assign the prostitute a position
of usefulness in modern civilization. One of the most distinguished of
English writers, in tracing the effects of Christianity upon mankind and
its beneficent influences in social life, says: "Under these circumstances
there has arisen in society a figure which is certainly the most
mournful, and, in some respects, the most awful upon which the eye of the
moralist can dwell. That unhappy being whose very name is a shame to
speak, who counterfeits, with a cold heart, the transports of affection,
and submits herself as a passive instrument of lust, who is scorned and
insulted as the vilest of her sex, and doomed for the most part to disease
and abject wretchedness, and an early death, appears in every age as the
perpetual symbol of the degradation and the sinfulness of man. Herself the
supreme type of vice, she is ultimately the most efficient guardian of
virtue. But for her the unchallenged purity of countless happy homes would
be polluted, and not a few, who in the pride of their untempted chastity
think of her with an indignant shudder, would have known the agony of
remorse and of despair. On that one degraded and ignoble form are
concentrated the passions that might have filled the world with shame.

She remains, while creeds and civilizations rise and fade, the external
priestess of humanity, blasted for the sins of the people."

The entertainer of the wholesale house who conducts his country customer
to see the sights of the town, whenever and wherever such sights are to be
seen, "where everything goes," pays the expenses of the round of
debauchery from the fund provided by his firm; while from the floating,
passing, male visitors, no less than from the resident male dwellers,
young and old, rich and poor, come the thousands of dollars which go to
the support of the lewd woman of the town, from the street walker, up
through the mistresses and the shady wives, to the best dressed and most
brazen wanton in the palaces--the "swell" houses so styled. The
unrevealable indecencies which attend these infamous resorts are within
the knowledge of the police, under any and every municipal administration.
At times their pressure upon these unfortunates is heavier than at others.
The necessity of raising campaign funds, the personal wants of the
blackmailers of the police force, the revenges to be gratified for some
jealousy aroused, or favor refused, all contribute to increase the weight
of oppression. Meanwhile, in the absence of municipal regulations, which
seem abhorrent to the average American mind as a recognition of the
legalization of vice, diseases are wide spread, until, in the language of
a distinguished physician, the most destructive of them have reached the
blood of "the best and noblest families of the land." Lecky, in his
History of European Morals, speaking of the horrible effects incident to
the non-regulation of houses of this character, says: "In the eyes of
every physician, and, indeed, in the eyes of most continental writers who
have adverted to the subject, no other feature of English life appears so
infamous as the fact that an epidemic, which is one of the most dreadful
now existing among mankind, which communicates itself from the guilty
husband to the innocent wife, and even transmits its taint to her
offspring, and which the experience of other nations conclusively proves
may be vastly eliminated, should be suffered to rage unchecked, because
the legislature refuses to take official cognizance of its existence, or
proper sanitary measures for its repression."

The protests of Christian organizations and of societies for the
suppression of vice seem to be in vain. The city ordinances prohibiting,
for instance, the employment of females in massage parlors patronized by
men, and others, intended to keep the conduct of all manufactories of vice
within limits, if not to accomplish their suppression, are not attempted
to be enforced.

Some mitigation of the evils of police aggression has been brought about,
as has been observed, by placing police magistrates under a salary
sufficiently large to induce them to partly abolish the practice of
wholesale midnight arrests, with their consequent fees and bailors'
exactions. These fees are now accounted for more rigidly and paid over to
the city, whether they are the result of daylight or midnight arrests.
These evils are not, however, wholly eradicated, nor will they be, until
an aroused public sentiment shall give as much attention, public service,
and personal endeavor, to the attainment of that most desirable end, as is
given to the building of an armory, the establishment of lake front parks,
Greater Chicago, the passage of revenue bills, and the defeat of the
attempt to obtain public franchises without compensation to the granting

Whatever will tend to create wealth for the individual, to increase the
volume of trade, or add to the attractiveness of the city in the
improvement or adornment of its public parks, the energetic and pushing
citizen aids with his personal services, and abundant wealth. Its moral
attractions receive, in so far as the repression of villainy and of
disgusting vice is concerned, but little, if any, personal or pecuniary
assistance from the people. At a recent meeting of the Law Enforcement
League, a clergyman, who had freely given his time and services in behalf
of the objects of that association, begged for the paltry sum of $250 with
which to carry on the work. It was received by contribution from his
audience after repeated appeals. Had it been a meeting for stock
subscriptions to some corporation promising large returns, or for the
purpose of building a monument to some former day hero, or author, the
appeal would not have had to fall upon the ears of the people repeatedly.
The request would have been granted upon its first presentation. "This
work," said the preacher, "cannot be carried on by sympathy, or applause,
or resolutions, or expressions of good will. There is nothing but hard
cash that counts in the practical work of enforcing the law."



That public opinion can be aroused on any question deemed of importance to
the municipal welfare finds abundant confirmation in the history of
Chicago, and that that opinion can make itself felt at the polls has but
recently been most remarkably demonstrated. Admittedly deficient, both by
friend and foe, in public assemblages called in behalf of its retention in
power; permitting the violation of the law, in all its departments; openly
consenting to the unrestrainted lechery of the debauched classes, the wide
open running of gambling houses, pool rooms and disorderly houses; aiding
by its refusal, or neglect, to stop the levying by the police of
protection rates upon poker rooms, crap games, pool rooms and dens of that
class, the pitfalls and snares set for the young men of the town;
assessing for political purposes the keepers of disreputable resorts of
all kinds, and the employes of the city under civil service rules in
defiance of a law sternly prohibiting that demoralizing practice; an
administration appealed to, and received, the support of nearly a majority
of the whole people, upon one fictitiously dominant issue, under which all
others were adroitly sheltered and wholly hidden from view.

That issue which concerned the people as an incorporated body, rather more
than as individuals, was practically non-existing. The power to invade
the rights of the people had been destroyed by State legislation. In the
absence of new legislation, the extension of railroad franchises is now an
impossibility, except under the terms of the existing charter. No
legislation can be obtained in enlargement of such municipal power, until
the next general assembly shall have convened in January, 1901, unless a
special session should be called for that particular purpose, the
probability of which is too remote to be considered. Meanwhile the new
administration which will be carried on for the next two years by
practically the same men as for the past two years, can find no refuge
behind an issue of supposedly overwhelming importance to hide its neglect
of others, which affect, if not directly, yet indirectly, the financial
interests of the city. Those matters, to which the administration of the
city must now give its attention, concern the purity of municipal
legislation; the proper enforcement of the laws in all departments of the
city government; no interference in matters of education; no attempt at
the control of the civil service commission in the strict enforcement of
the law creating it; the proper letting of contracts, and the preservation
of pay-rolls from manipulation and fraudulent swelling. The purity of
municipal legislation is assured by the election of a number of aldermen
whose records as citizens warrant the prediction that they, joining with
an already trusty minority, for the ensuing year at least, will conserve
public rather than private interests, guided by the promptings of each
individual conscience. There will be no opportunity to filch from them for
party ends, or for personal advancement, due public acknowledgment of
their integrity and ability. But the enforcement of the laws governing
municipal administration in its several departments; the proper
disbursement of its appropriation funds for street improvements, scavenger
service, street and alley cleaning, public buildings and parks, etc.; the
management of the school-board by its own officials, free from political
suasion; of the civil service commission along the lines contemplated by
the law free from party dictation, and the elevation of the police force
to the plane of its non-political duties, for the prevention of the
spread of vice and indecency, the repression of crime, the protection of
life and property, are all matters, the non-attention to which can no
longer be excused upon the theory of the necessity of first destroying an
attempted private seizure of the public streets, a theory which has gone
to its destruction by the repeal of an obnoxious law, under which seizure
might have been accomplished.

So far as the suppression of vice is concerned, the initial duty of
municipal administration is the education of the police in their duties as
imposed upon them by law. For years, under every administration, with
infrequent, feeble attempts at reform, that force has been rapidly
becoming a fleet of harveyized steel battleships, sailing under the
flaunting flag of vice, fully armed, and loyally serving the kings of the
gamblers, the queens of the demi-monde, and their conjoined forces of
thieves, confidence men, cappers, prostitutes, philanderers, etc., etc. It
is not in the least fearful of public opinion. If wealth can snap its
fingers and cry aloud "The public be d--d," so can the force laugh in its
sleeve, and, aping wealth, echo "To hell" with the public.

It is not different in Chicago from what it is in New York. The temporary
disappearance from the "Tenderloin" of many of its flagrant vices, and the
supposed purification of the police force following the astounding
revelations of the Lexow committee, have given way under the ceaseless and
insidious assaults of criminal and vicious influences. A New York journal
recently said: "The reports to the Society for the Prevention of Crime
show that the city is in worse condition than ever before. No paper would
dare print all that is done openly in dens of vice that are tolerated by
the police. The reports seem almost incredible; they show that with few
exceptions the police force is corrupt from top to bottom. Gambling
houses, disorderly houses and dives of the worst description flourish
openly, a regular schedule of rates has been established which the police
force charge for protection.

The flagrancy of crime which brought about a political revolution five
years ago exists today as it did then. In some ways there is even less
attempt at concealment than there was in the ante-Lexow days; in others
the vice and immorality is more hidden. But it is here, and instead of
there being one "Tenderloin" ulcer on the city there are now four, each
fully as extended as was that old hotbed of vice."

What the police force of New York was before the investigation of the
Lexow committee, so the police force of Chicago then was; and what the New
York force is today, so is the Chicago force. A new investigation is about
to begin in New York city. Watch its revelations day after day. Change the
names, and for every police infamy revealed, every unspeakable vice
disclosed, every violation of law recorded, their counterparts can be
found in Chicago, intensified, not modified.

The crimes which these "coppers" should, but do not, give their services
to repress, are numerous, if minor in character. In flagrant cases of
commission arrests may follow, and often do. It is the unused means of
prevention deadened by the purchased indifference of the officers, that is
the most glaring of police sins.

The location of "blind pigs," or those places in which liquor is sold
without a license, both within prohibition districts as well as without
them, must either be known to officers traveling beats whereon they
flourish, or such officers are too ignorant to belong to the ranks. It is
not ignorance of the officers that prevents their suppression. Superiors
are paid a price for non-interference. The patrolman follows his orders,
permits the illicit traffic to be carried on by those who pay that price,
and reports only those who do not pay it, but who seek to conduct the
prohibited business without contribution to the permissive fund.

In the most respectable settlements of the city, in the very heart of
prohibition districts, in which there would be spasms of protest and
whirlwinds of indignation if it were even suggested that the lines
separating the prohibitive from the non-prohibitive districts should be
abolished, are to be found the highest grade of the breed of "blind pigs."
They are the brilliantly lighted, well arranged, and aristocratic types of
the modern drugstore, where, as the evening shades descend, a band of
friendly Indians assembles to discuss the events of the day, conduct wars,
shape the destinies of nations, and draw their inspiration from spiritus
fermenti op., a drug commonly known, however, as whisky, when obtained
without a prescription at the bar of the ordinary licensed saloon. These
whisky jacks express amazement at the want of proper regulation of the
sale of liquor, while aiding in its unlawful traffic. They are typical
Archimagos; high priests of hypocrisy and deceit. They are the open
mouthed reformers who shout for a rigorous application of the law for the
regulation of saloons outside of their own prohibition districts, for the
maintenance of prohibition within those districts, and who wink at their
own infractions of the license laws, behind the prescription case--their
private bar.

This form of attack upon the license law exists all over the city, more so
perhaps in prohibition districts than without them, but each drug store,
as a rule, has its patrons from whom a yearly revenue is derived by the
accommodating and equally guilty proprietor who vends his drinks without
compliance with the law.

The other class of "blind pigs" owes its existence to a prearranged
bargain between a policeman and the members of that class, who, for the
entertainment of friends, and the turning of a penny, embark in the
business without fear of arrest. As the sale of liquor for use upon the
premises as a beverage is lawful when licensed, every combination to evade
a license is not only an evasion of the penalties of the license law, but
it is a conspiracy to rob the city of a portion of a large revenue,
sufficient almost to support the police force. The city is thus plundered
by its own servants who take its place in fixing the amount of the
license, and who appropriate it when collected to their own use.

Some of these institutions are to be found in the rear of bakeries, in the
costly barns of the wealthy classes with coachmen as bartenders, and at
the gates of the silent cities of the dead.

They are a fruitful source of revenue to the police, and, consequently,
difficult of discovery, since their patrons must be well known as
non-squealers, and the police are too loyal to turn informers.

They exist in surrounding country towns and in classic neighborhoods, in
Evanston and Hyde Park particularly. Both of these localities are the
seats of institutions of learning; the Northwestern University at the one,
and the University of Chicago at the other.

A Lieutenant of Police was arrested for extorting money for protection
from the keeper of a blind pig in Hyde Park. It developed, in the course
of his trial, that he was to pay part of the insurance premium to a
brewery company. To such an extent has this blackmailing scheme gone, that
its proceeds are distributed not alone among patrolmen and superior police
officials, but also to brewing companies united in a trust affecting the
price and the quality of the poor man's beverage.

The national pastime of the Filipinos is of common occurrence in Chicago,
and escapes the watchful eyes of the police, although its uniformed
members pass the door of the saloon with which the principal pit is
connected. The entering crowds, and the crowing of "birds," never fail to
announce the on-coming of the main, except to sightless eyes and deafened
ears. No underground or out of hearing place is selected for these
exhibitions of cock fighting. They are held in the rear of saloons, or in
barns or stables connected therewith by covered ways of approach. One
geographical division of the city is generally pitted against the other.

Usually the indignant police, even with early information of the time and
place where and when this inhuman amusement is to be held, arrive upon the
scene when the fight has ended, the lights extinguished, and the sports
scattered. Although the city council possesses the charter power to
prevent these disgraceful combats, that power remains unacted upon, and
the offense falls within the definition of disorderly conduct, the penalty
prescribed by ordinance, upon conviction for that offense, being a fine of
from one to one hundred dollars.

Bucket shops have nearly disappeared from the public gaze. They are,
nevertheless, still carried on in secret, for the purpose of enabling men
and women to gratify their natural propensity for gambling. The active
efforts of one man, having the courage of his convictions and with the
support of a commercial organization, which is the only competitor of
these gambling concerns, have kept them in comparative subjection. Yet,
such is the resistance made by them, that this man, aiding also in the
discovery and punishment of gambling in general, ran the risk of the
destruction of his life, his home, and the loss of the lives of his
family, by the explosion of a bomb thrown at night into, or against, his
house, by some miscreant or miscreants, with the evident intent of
"removing" him as an impediment to the transactions of their murderous

The police, after much effort to discover the perpetrators of the outrage,
finally dismissed it from further examination, upon the theory that this
man had himself "put up the job," to accomplish the destruction of his
wife and children, and of his own life. Through this heroic man's efforts,
together with those of a fearless and outspoken clergyman, as in New York,
and not by reason of police assistance, but in spite of police resistance,
the convictions in the criminal court, in the past year for gambling, are
wholly due. The latest accessible reports show that in the year 1897 the
number of places closed during the two preceding years was one hundred and
forty-six, and that at the end of 1897 there were twenty-nine still in
existence, including tape games and fraudulent brokers' haunts. These
institutions possess a peculiar fascination for women. Three of them,
patronized wholly by the female sex, were found under one roof. Of the
leading one, a writer in a city daily newspaper, in a vivid description of
its general surroundings, said:

"The atmosphere of the rooms is stifling and poisonous. The odor is rank
with the effluvia of bodies, which, in many cases, present the appearance
that would justify the belief that they have been strangers to the bath
for weeks. To go into these rooms out of the fresh outdoor world is to
almost suffocate at first. * * * The effects are plainly visible in the
faces of the women. They had, with few exceptions, leathery, sallow skins,
drawn and tense features, hard lines about the mouth, and wrinkles between
the eyes, while the eyes themselves had acquired a restless, half cunning
expression, composed of cupidity and uncertainty. As for their nervous
systems they are wrecks. Take the hand of any woman in those rooms,
especially if she has just made an investment, and the nervous vibration
is plain--her hand quivers, her whole body is tense, her bulging eyes fix
themselves on the board."

Alluding to the men who hang around, furnishing "pointers," and looking
for an invitation to a fifteen-cent lunch, one of the speculating women
said of them, "These men are the lowest creatures who come up here; most
of the women are respectable, but these men are lazy, dirty, ignorant and
infinitely low, and all they are after is to get money and a free meal out
of women."

"The ages of the women range from twenty-five to seventy years. The older
women peered anxiously through their spectacles at the board and whispered
quietly to a companion; wisps of ragged gray hair escaped and waved below
the little black bonnet. Heavy, thick-soled shoes stuck out from the hem
of the modest black gowns; they grasped worn silk reticules in their
nervous fingers, and got out the small sum which, in most instances, they
did not have the nerve to invest."

Describing the condition in life of these women, the reporter was told
that some had been wealthy, and were now poor through speculation; while
"more than two-thirds are the mothers of families and are eking out a
little income, in many instances supporting an idle, worthless man, who
should himself be out in the world earning a living."

"If they make 75 cents a day it is a big day for them," said the
reporter's informant. "How little you realize the state to which many of
these women are brought! Many of them are almost penniless. Frequently
they come here in the morning and borrow money with which to begin the
day's operations."

Pool rooms, as a general rule, run wide open; occasionally they are
"closed for repairs" caused by a police raid, forced by some flagrant
outrage against the law. They flourish in the most public places, with no
restriction upon admission to any visitor. The daily races all over the
country are posted on large black boards covering the walls, with a list
of the horses entered and a minute of the odds which will be given or
demanded by the house, from which the room's judgment of the "favorite"
can be ascertained.

The money is handled openly, bet openly, and paid openly. City detectives
assist in their management, and "play the races." Raids contemplated by
the police are tipped off to the managers, and when the officers arrive
the game has closed.

The incidents attending an actual pull are in the main more laughable than
impressive. The "hurry up" wagon takes its load away, and before many
moments have elapsed the same faces are seen again returning to the one
attractive spot in their daily lives. These rooms are munificent
contributors for protection. They pay from $600 to $1,000 per month. They
hold back telegraphic messages of the results of races until their
confederates have placed bets. They are patronized by women of,
apparently, all classes. In one raid eighteen women were captured, fifteen
of whom claimed to be married. All of them, of course, gave fictitious
names; three had babies in their arms; three claimed they were wives of
policemen; a few were well dressed, and all were undoubtedly devotees of
gambling, sporting women who fancied they had discovered the way to lead
an easy and money-making life.

The following extract, taken from the examination of the head of the
police force of the city, will show the view entertained by that official
of the nature of his duties, in this regard.

Before the senatorial committee appointed January 6th, 1898, to
investigate scandals in connection with the police force, its Chief was
interrogated and answered as follows, viz.:

Q. How many pool rooms have you pulled, how many men have been arrested
and convicted for pool selling since you have been chief?

A. I understand one fellow has been found guilty and fined $2,000.

Q. But he was arrested by the Sheriff of Cook County, indicted by the
grand jury because the police would not do it?

A. I don't know whether it was because the police would not do it, or
because they could not do it.

Q. Well, it was because they did not do it. Do you mean to say that you,
as Chief of Police, with 3,500 sworn men----

A. Don't say 3,500 men. It is 2,500 men; don't make it quite so strong.

Q. Do you say to this committee, that with 2,500 sworn men in this city
you are powerless to stop the public running of pool rooms in this city?

A. I will say that I am powerless to stop a man from making hand books, or
selling pools confidentially to his friends.

Q. Do you know of any pool rooms being conducted in this city during the
months of October, November and December?

A. I don't know of my own knowledge; I never was in one.

Q. Did any of the 2,500 men ever report anything of that kind to you?

A. I never had any definite report on that subject.

Q. They were giving the people a liberal government?

A. Yes, things were running very easy.

       *       *       *       *       *

Q. I will get you to state if it is not a fact that a large number of pool
rooms were running openly with telegraph operators in the place, pools
were being sold, money paid, and everything running at full blast?

A. I never was present; I don't know anything about it.

Q. Was there any complaint to you of that kind of thing being done?

A. No particular complaint at all. The newspaper boys often came around
and said there was pool selling going on at different places.

Q. Could not the police of the city of Chicago as readily have found these
people who have been fined for gambling as the Sheriff?

A. Well, I don't know. I presume if a _desperate effort had been made to
look that kind of thing up we might, possibly, have been successful_.

Through these resorts, which offer inducements for betting on distant
horse races, the confidential clerk, the outside collector for business
houses, the employes of banks, young men in all grades of employment
involving the handling of the funds of their employers, together with the
men of moderate salaries, working men, and the large number of sports who
live by their wits, are assisted in a downward career, until defalcations,
destitution in homes, and a still more acute phase of living on one's
wits, are reached, followed by flight, arrest, conviction, imprisonment,
the breaking up of homes, and the necessity for the resort of the broken
sport to the tactics of the hold-up man.

Yet they are tolerated, until their shameless management becomes a public
scandal. Then follows a pull, a period of purification of very slight
duration, and again a slow start. Speedily again they are in as full
gallop as are the horses whose names they post, and as around the race
track the horses go, so around the vice track the pool rooms go. The
losing patrons pass under the wire at the end of their foolish struggle to
win, some to the penitentiary, some to despair, and some to suicide.

The keeper and the landlord who knowingly permits his premises to be used
for the selling of pools, are, under the laws of the State of Illinois
enacted into an ordinance by the Municipal Code, guilty of a misdemeanor,
and are liable to punishment by imprisonment in the county jail for a
period not longer than one year, or by a fine not exceeding $2,000, or

The police make no complaints to justices for arrests, nor to their Chief,
according to his testimony. The keeper pays a high rent, while the
landlord, perhaps some sanctimonious deacon of a church, who thanks God
that he is not as other men are, accepts his monthly returns with unctuous
satisfaction, shouts his amens louder, confesses his sins more meekly, or
excuses his violation of the laws of the state with a more emphatic shrug
of his shoulders and a more fervid rubbing of his hands.

Book making, "in which the betting is with the book maker," and pool
selling, in which the betting is among the purchasers of the pool, they
paying a commission to the seller, are both denounced by the statute, and
the court of last resort of the state.

The unholy alliance between the police, the keeper of these law breaking
and despicable haunts, and the conscienceless landlord, could be summarily
dissolved. The police could be made the enemy of both. Their warm
friendship for, and silent participation in the profits of, the
partnership, can be destroyed by an executive order which needs but to be
issued, with no possibility of an early revocation, to be implicitly
obeyed by the sellers and "bookies." If not obeyed, then drastic measures
within the power of the police to employ should be applied. As these lines
are written, some evidence is visible of action by the police. A raid has
been made! The inspector, under whose order it was conducted, said, "The
sooner these men begin to learn that I mean what I say, the better it will
be for them. I want my officers to understand, also, that they will have
to be more vigilant." Threatening words, such as these, are common
utterances by police officials, but heretofore as their echo died away
their fierceness disappeared. No administration could lay claim to higher
praise in any city in the land than that its police force is the guardian
of the people's rights, the stern foe of crime, and the relentless
suppressor of vice and indecency through the enforcement of the laws
created for that suppression.

If this is done in Chicago, a few of the devil's aids in the diffusion of
wickedness will disappear from sight so completely that Asmodeus would
vainly tear off the roofs of the houses in a search after proofs of his
demoniacal power.

While the police force is so closely leagued with pool rooms, and
subjected to the power of the money their keepers are willing to pay for
permission to carry on their demoralizing business, it is a matter of
impossibility to destroy them. Vice works incessantly; the means for its
destruction are employed spasmodically. New York City furnishes an
astonishing instance of the political power exercised by a combination of
the law breakers.

The Lexow committee demonstrated the almost total depravity of an officer,
charged with a command over its "Tenderloin."

The city labored and Greater New York was born. It would seem that greater
crime and greater political power in the criminal classes were born at
the same birth. That officer became Chief of Police of the expanded
metropolis. He had been indicted under the scathing revelations against
him made by the Lexow committee, and yet despite the evidence of his
depravity, and the protests of the Society for the Prevention of Crime, he
was, through the power of politics and crime, foisted upon the new
municipality as the ranking officer of its police organization. The result
was inevitable. New York, the greater, is now declared to out-Satan New
York, the lesser. A new committee is probing into its police management.
At the outset of its proceedings it wrung from this officer replies so
self condemning as to stagger one's faith in the possibility of such a
quality as obedience to official oath in a police officer.

The Chief was asked: Q. Perhaps you can tell how it is and why it is, that
even while this committee is sitting in session here, the pool rooms are
open all around us, and I have in my pocket money that my men won in the
pool rooms?

A. Perhaps some of my men have it, too. They are looking after it just the
same as you are.

Q. But the pool rooms are running?

The Chief did not answer, but complained to his questioner that he had not
been informed of the facts "officially."

The examination then proceeded as follows, viz.:

Q. Do you mean to say, as Chief of Police, with the men and money at your
command, you can't close the pool rooms?

"No," replied the Chief, "we do the best we can, as we did when you were a

"I closed the pool rooms," shouted his questioner. "You did not," retorted
the Chief; "they were alleged to be, on reports of commanding officers,
then as now."

"Yes," said the questioner, "but there was some fatality about that
business, if you know what I mean."

"Some forced fatalities," sneered the Chief. "Well, sir," said the
questioner, "here are three great evils of importance--gambling houses,
pool rooms and policy shops--and you cannot recall from your own
recollection--you who are in charge of the enforcement of the laws--a
single arrest in any one of these classes of crimes within a month. What
do you do for your salary as Chief?"

A. "I look after the force as a whole; I look after all reports that come
in touching all matters of the kind you refer to and all kinds of crime."

The questioner called the Chief's attention to a newspaper and some
advertisements it carried. In spite of the questioner's declaration that
the paper was a Tammany organ, and that all Tammany men were supposed to
buy it and read it, the Chief declared that he never had done so. The
questioner made the Chief a present of a copy of the paper, and asked him
to read over the massage advertisements. The Chief thanked him and said,
"I will attend to these places because I do not believe in such disguises
for disorderly houses. Such places are usually in tenement houses and
flats. I will attend to them and drive them out."

"Will you make the same pledge about pool rooms," demanded the questioner

"That I cannot promise," replied the Chief.

"Why can't you promise it?" asked the questioner.

"Because they conduct that sort of business in places where we can't get
at them, and you know it, but I will try and stamp it out."

Chicago and New York methods quite agree, with the advantage in favor of
New York. In the latter city, the Chief of Police "will try" to stamp pool
rooms out. In Chicago, the Chief, in his reply to similar questions, said:
"While a man may come to my office and give information that a certain
individual is violating the law somewhere and it is a trivial offense, I
do not pay so much attention to it as I do when a report reaches my office
that a man has committed a serious crime, such as murder, that a serious
crime has been committed on the outside. I should naturally abandon that
part of it, and take up the more serious offense, and I have been looking
up serious crimes, such as burglary, robbery and the hold-up people, and I
have made a desperate effort to suppress that."

It was in this connection reference was made by the committee to the fact
that one of Chicago's policemen had shortly before been arrested for
holding up a citizen and robbing him in the daylight hours, which called
forth the reply already quoted in these pages to the effect that this
particular star had been tried, that he was a member of the police force
for ten years, was a good officer, but got drunk and became a "little
indiscreet." For this he was dismissed from the force, but reinstated
because "many people" vouched for him. It seems almost incredible that
that man is today a member of Chicago's police force; yet such is the
shameful fact.

Without the aid of the telegraph, the daily newspaper and the race cards,
pool rooms and book making could not survive. They are the means of giving
vitality to this form of gambling. The telegraph furnishes the press with
"events" all over the country, upon which pools and books are made up. The
news of the result of a particular race is flashed by wire at once from
the race track to the pool rooms all over the land. There is scarcely a
daily newspaper in any city that does not devote a page of its issue to
sporting events. Many of them have their "forms" or "forecasts" of races,
which are the guesses of their sporting men as to the probable results of
each race to be run on a particular track. The race card is distributed
every evening throughout the city; to cigar stores, saloons and billiard
halls. It contains the "results" of the day, together with information as
to the entries for the following day's races. Through these sources the
sporting community keeps in touch with the world.

A Chicago afternoon newspaper upon the occasion of the opening of a race
track in an adjoining state presented in its issue its "Form of Today's
Races." To those unacquainted with the lingo of the track its guesses are
delightfully humorous.

Predicting the possible result of the first race, the form says: "B. L.
looks the best of the lot on paper. If the trip from the east did not take
the edge off H. S. he should win easily, as he showed considerable
sprinting ability in his last out. L. P. has a burst of speed which may
put her inside of the money and with a good boy up is worth a show bet.
The others are a poor lot and of uncertain quality, so that the finish
will probably be B. L., etc." Of the second it remarks: "Of these
youngsters which have started C. has been the most consistent and is
undoubtedly the best, but T. is rounding too rapidly and may run ahead of
the mark. F. A. is a sprinter, but if pinched does not like the gaff. M.
E. and M. are green ones, and this is the first time they have faced the
barrier, so there is no line on them. C. T. and F. A. should be the order
of the finish." It says of the third race: "M. is a soft spot, and, if
fit, she should win as she pleases. It looks as if the real race should be
for the place and the show money, and will likely be between M. and A. H.
and T. are also partial to the going, but as the latter has not started
recently, T. should be the better if any of the others named are
scratched. The result will likely be M. A., etc." Of another, a colt race,
its forecast is, "H. is such a good colt that he looks like a 2-to-5 shot
in this bunch, and that will be about what the books will lay against him.
Of course, he has dicky legs, but the soft undergoing will undoubtedly
suit his underpinning. The finish should be H. K., etc." The final race is
thus placed in the form: "At the best this is a bad lot, and hardly worthy
of doping, as so much depends on the jockeys and start that any one of the
probable starters has a chance to get the big end of the purse."

To this necessity has journalism come at last! While it urges the
suppression, in thundering tones, of all manner of gambling, it is driven,
by the necessity of competition, to aid the most injurious of gambling's
many attractive methods. Another Chicago newspaper, the columns of which
every morning contain the world's news of sporting events, said a short
time ago, editorially: "Chief K----'s assurance that he will do his best
to suppress gambling will be accepted in good faith. He has made a start
in that direction, and the farther he goes the more plainly he will see
that for the police to suppress gambling is a mere matter of lifting their
hands. Gambling of the sort that the police department is expected to
suppress does not flourish save by the connivance of police officers. It
is quite true that to extirpate the vice of gaming is beyond the power of
the police. Nobody has expected them to do that. While the board of trade
and the stock exchanges remain open one form of the vice will be practiced
publicly beyond the reach of the police. And so long as cards and dice
boxes are to be procured, degenerate human nature will practice the vice
in secret. But the police can stamp out the open and flagrant practice of
gambling in forms inhibited by the law as easily as they can wink at it.
It is a matter of saying "Yes" or "No." A poolroom or a policy shop may
open now and then, but it will quickly shut again if the police are in

The assistance derived from the telegraph and newspaper by the gambling
fraternity is commented upon by a modern writer, his subject being "The
Ethics of Gambling." He remarks, "But it is time to emphasize the fact
that the real supports of the gambling habit in its present enormous
extent are the telegraph and the newspaper. Half the race courses in the
country would be abandoned almost immediately if newspapers were
forbidden to report on betting, and if telegraph offices declined to
transmit agreements to bet, or information which is intended to guide
would-be bettors. How this is to be done it is not for me to say. My
present object and duty are exhausted in pointing out the fact that the
national life is being deeply injured, the State seriously weakened by the
wide spread of the gambling habit, and further, that this habit in its
present extent and intensity, is nourished most by the daily press and the
telegraph. It must certainly be in the power of the State to deal with
this, the most potent instrument by which the gambling fiend fights his
way into home after home throughout the length and breadth of the

"Hold up" men find Chicago their least dangerous and, perhaps, their most
profitable field of operations. In all the various forms of this robbery
upon the street in day or at night time, or in raiding saloons and stores,
it is merciless in its methods. Robbery accomplished, brutality follows.
The criminals who resort to it at night, not satisfied with acquiring
their victim's property, usually knock him unconscious with the butt end
of a revolver, with a billy or sand bag, or blind him with cayenne pepper,
and in that hapless condition leave him to be found, no matter what may be
the state of the weather. This form of criminality is a winter's
occupation. It is occasionally, but rarely, followed in the summer months.

Women are held up in the streets at midday, in the evening when returning
home from labor, on the street cars, and at the doors of their own homes,
and within them. No class is exempt from the attacks of these marauders.
The poor suffer with the rich. They are of such frequent occurrence that
it is believed not one-fourth of their number is reported to the police.
The inefficiency of the force to prevent them is proverbial, and that
inefficiency finds much of its origin in the utter disregard of the rules
of the department requiring patrolmen to travel their respective beats.
The discipline of the force in this respect is nothing; it is worn away by

The colder the night and the warmer the nearest saloon or kitchen range,
there will the patrolman be found. In the former case he is merely
dreaming of his duty; and in the latter, he is engaged in a terrific
struggle between love and duty. Some back door of a house of ill fame is
open to him for shelter, for wine, and oftentimes for food. The
good-hearted landladies of these abodes know full well that one way to
reach the patrolmen stationed in their neighborhood is through their
stomachs, not because they are officers, but because they are men. In
localities away from the bagnios, some servant girl, friendly to the
"copper," protects him from the inclemency of the weather. To her he gives
his time and his devotions at the city's expense. If on some, or on any
winter's night, an observation flight could be taken through the air, and
over the city, by the Chief, that official would believe his occupation
was gone; for, except here and there as some of his subordinates were
wending their way at the appointed hour to a patrol box to report, he
would fancy he was a general deserted by his army. Closer inspection
would, however, reveal to him that never an army had such comfortable
winter quarters as has his. While the patrolman thus enjoys his siesta,
or indulges in his love making, the hold up man lies in wait on the
unguarded beat, to slug and rob the first belated wayfarer whom he may

The number of hold ups in Chicago in the year 1898, it is believed,
exceeded in number those of any two large cities in the United States
combined. The press, in fact, claims that their number was greater than in
all of the cities of the United States. They were of almost daily
occurrence. They are just as numerous, and just as ingenious and murderous
in design, since the continued administration was inaugurated, as before.

In the morning edition of the daily press of April 11th, 1899, the
re-elected Mayor's felicitations to the council in his annual message
delivered on the previous evening were published in these words:

"The people of Chicago have reason to congratulate themselves on the
successful manner in which the police department has coped with crime. It
is acknowledged on all hands that Chicago is a singularly good place for
thugs and thieves to avoid, and this notwithstanding the fact that the
size of the police force is utterly inadequate."

The evening papers of the same date report the following as examples of
how the thieves and thugs avoid Chicago:

"L. was arrested early yesterday morning for alleged participation in a
daring hold up, which occurred near the corner of Van Buren and State
streets about an hour before. A cab containing Mr. and Mrs. L. B., who
live on Pine street, and Mrs. C. D., of North Clark street, approached the
curb. As the three occupants alighted four or five men rushed at them. One
drew a revolver and shouted: "Hands up." The other made a dash at Mrs. D.,
who displayed some valuable jewelry, and snatched a watch worth $225 and a
diamond ring valued at $125. The highwaymen then disappeared around the

"Attacked by Three Negroes.--Stanton Avenue police are looking for three
negroes who held up Albert T., of 37th street, at 33rd and Dearborn
streets last night and relieved him of $4.00 and a watch. T. was standing
under the shadow of a building at the corner when three negroes
approached him. One of them drew a revolver and threatened T., while the
other two searched him. Many people were passing at the time, but the
party escaped all notice in the deep shadows."

"As Thomas L. and Joseph S. left Ald. K.'s saloon early today, S. says he
was robbed of $2.45--all the money he had."

"Robbed in a Saloon.--August J., bound for Minneapolis from Finland, came
to Chicago last evening. He met a woman, and the two went to Samuel M.'s
saloon on State street, where J. claims the woman held him up at the point
of a revolver and took all his money--$25. J. reported the matter to the
Harrison street police, and Officers C. and S. arrested Albert B., the
bartender. He was arraigned before Justice F. today on a charge of being
accessory to robbery. The woman has not been arrested."

Following this, two men boarded an outgoing railroad train at night, and
at one of its stopping stations captured a passenger who was standing on
the rear platform of a coach, dragged him away, robbed him of a small sum
of money, a lady's gold watch, took a plain gold ring from his finger,
then bound and gagged him and threw him into an empty freight car near by.

Within three weeks after the publication of this effusive compliment to
the police, a citizen sent the following communication to an evening
paper, which, together with the comments of that paper upon it, is here
inserted, as the best criticism of the Mayor's optimistic view of the
efficiency of his police force:

"April 26, 1899.--Editor the J.: Not fewer than 15 flats and residences in
the district bounded by West Adams street, Kedzie avenue, Homan avenue and
Washington boulevard have been plundered recently. The thieves reside at
----, a fact well known to the police, but all the efforts of the
suffering tax payers are unavailing in having them arrested.

"The police authorities will not act. The rascals have been at their
present abode (----, first flat) since early last autumn. Their landlord
is (well, I won't mention his name) well known.

"Our community has become so terrorized that no one dares remain out after
dark. Can't you assist us in our troubles? The police don't act.


The comments of the paper read as follows, viz.:

"The author of the above is a well-to-do West side manufacturer. He says
in a note which came with this communication: 'Do not under any
circumstances couple my name with it. We are all afraid of our lives,
believing that the thieves are so desperate that they would murder any one
disclosing their method and abode.'

This is the district in which George B. Fern and Cora Henderson met their
deaths under such mysterious circumstances.

Here is a partial list of the happenings of recent date in this one
neighborhood, the first four named cases being within one business block:

GEORGE B. FERN, dry goods merchant, 1393 West Madison street; found in his
store with bullet hole in his head, mask and revolver with one chamber
empty at his side; police say he committed suicide; coroner's jury
returned a murder verdict; the grand jury also declares it was a case of

CORA HENDERSON, blind woman, 1385 West Madison street; found dead in her
house, hole in her skull; murder theory worked upon by police; later
theory advanced that she might have met her death by a fall.

F. W., tailor, West Madison street; robbers drove up to his store in broad
daylight while he was eating in a restaurant next door and intimidated
clerk with revolver, loaded in tailor's cloth, drove away.

W. H. D., West Madison street, grocer; hole drilled in his safe; burglars
scared away when D. came to open store.

MRS. FRANK W., Washington boulevard, house entered; $200 stolen.

MRS. MARGARET D., Washington boulevard; house entered; $200 worth of
property taken.

MRS. WARREN F. H., Warren avenue; house entered; $500 worth of property

MRS. CHARLES C., Washington boulevard; hearing a noise at her front door,
went onto the porch; a burglar who had been trying to force an entrance
into the second story dropped at her side, revolver in hand; he escaped,
frightening off pursuers with his revolver.

DR. F. F. S., West Monroe street and Homan avenue; two men attempted to
hold him up in his office; frightened away by the arrival of a patient.

PROF. CHARLES E. W., Chicago Piano college; chased by mounted foot pad.

MRS. ELIZABETH H. T., M. D., Warren avenue; swindled out of $60 by men who
had a 'sure thing' on the races.

JOHN V., West Monroe street; swindled by same game.

WILLIAM H. P., bookkeeper for C. S. & Co., West Monroe street; house

HERMAN W., West Monroe street; house robbed of diamonds, jewelry and
silverware; Mrs. W. coming home, encounters robbers as they were leaving;
they politely raised their hats and walked on.

H. S. B., real estate, West Adams street; candidate for president of M.
club; house robbed.

ARTHUR W. C., Illinois Credit Company, West Adams street; house robbed.

JOHN G., grocer; attempt made to swindle him out of $100 by men with 'tip'
on races.

The above list was obtained by a brief canvass of the neighborhood.

The house given as the abode of the "thieves" is situated right in this
neighborhood, which is one of the best residence districts. It is a gray
stone structure and is said to be owned by a well known West side
politician. In this place lives at least one of the men who have swindled
numerous West side residents of this district by means of the 'tips' on
the races. These men, it is said, have operated successfully for a year,
few of their victims making complaint on account of the unenviable
publicity the affair would thus attain. This gang, too, has headquarters
in a West Madison street block within a few doors of the Fern store.

This neighborhood is included in the Warren avenue police district. None
of the officers at this station, or any of the Central station detectives
familiar with the case, believes that the 'jockeys' have anything to do
with the 'holdups' and robberies of flats, and laugh at the idea advanced
by the author of the letter to The J--."

The names and addresses of these victims are printed in full in the
newspaper referred to, but for obvious reasons they are not used in
reproducing the article.

Immediately following the publication of this startling list of crimes, a
grand jury submitted to the court the following report. The reader can
harmonize, as best he may, this official statement, with that of a
lighthearted and self satisfied Mayor who controls, or does not control,
as one's thought may elect, the Chicago police force.

"In closing our work the members of the jury desire to report to your
honor some slight comment on the various matters which have been brought
to our attention during our session, and to submit for recommendation to
the proper authorities suggestions that may check the amount of crime
which has been brought to our notice.

"Our city seems to be the asylum of habitual criminals of all classes, who
have terrorized the people to an alarming degree. We would particularly
call attention to several instances within our knowledge where persons
have been found dead, investigation made by the proper authorities,
verdicts rendered according to the evidence with recommendations by the
coroner's jury that the guilty be brought to justice. These deeds wherein
the perpetrators in several instances have not been detected are largely
due to the fact that this city is made an asylum for habitual criminals,
and we strongly recommend that every measure be taken to close the gates
of the city to such people.

"Were the statute of the state regarding the arrest of vagabonds more
strictly enforced by the proper authorities the number of habitual
criminals at large could be largely reduced and Chicago made a less
attractive place of residence for this class. The law itself is broad and
ample in its provisions. Places under the guise of saloons, duly licensed,
are merely rendezvous for thieves, murderers and prostitutes, and
notwithstanding the fact that such vile places are well known to the
authorities they are permitted to continue without molestation. The
defilement of our youths of both sexes should receive the severest penalty
of the law. It is our duty to protect and guard the manhood and womanhood
of the young.

"The continued violation of the ordinance fixing the closing hours of
saloons is a great factor in the number of crimes committed in the city,
and we earnestly recommend a strict enforcement of the ordinance."

Apparently, a few of these criminal gentry regard Chicago as a safe field
for their labors!

Boys in their teens, men and women, both black and white, the latter of
the strong armed class, comprise this coterie of criminals. The strong
armed women, generally negresses, have the developed muscles of the
pugilist and the daring of the pirate. They entice the stranger into dark
passage ways, that innocent stranger, so unfamiliar, but so willing to be
made familiar with the wickedness of a great city, who seeks out its most
disreputable quarters and scours its darkest byways, to report to his
mates, on his return to his country home, the salacious things that he has
heard of, and a few of which he witnessed. In these dark and dangerous
ways the strong armed women garrote and rob their victims, or they entice
the innocent, but lustful, stranger to their rooms, and there, through the
panel game, or by sheer strength or drugged potations, appropriate the
innocent stranger's valuables. Mortified and humiliated, the stranger
usually has nothing to say to the police of the affair. Then the
emboldened strong armed women go upon the street in couples, and rob in
the most approved methods of the highwayman. Alone, one of these notorious
characters is said to have pilfered to the extent of $60,000. She was, and
is, a terror to the police force. Released from the penitentiary not long
ago, she is now undergoing trial for a fresh offense. Approaching a
commercial traveler from behind, she is charged with having nearly
strangled him, and then robbed him of his money and jewelry.

"Only one man ever got the best of E. F.," said detective Sergeant C. R.
W., of Harrison street station, who had arrested E. F. frequently.

"Once she held up a cowboy and took $150 from him. He came up to the
station hotfoot to report the robbery. We were busy and a little slow in
sending out after E., whereupon the cowboy allowed he'd start out after
her on his own hook. He met her down by the Polk street depot, and the
moment he spotted her he walked right up close to her and covered her with
two six-shooters.

"You've got $150 of my money, now shell out nigger," he said.

"Go and get a warrant and have me arrested then," replied the big colored
woman, who wanted time to plant the coin.

"These are good enough warrants for me," returned the cowboy
significantly, as he poked the revolvers a trifle closer to her face.
"Now, I'm going to count twenty, and if I don't see my money coming back
before I reach twenty, I'll go with both guns."

"When he reached eighteen, E. weakened. She drew out a wad and held it out
toward him. But the cowboy was wise and would not touch the roll till she
had walked to the nearest lamplight under the escort of his two guns and
counted out the $150. Then he let her go and came back to the station and

Conductors of street cars are often the victims of the hold up men. Here
in Chicago they invented the plan of placing the saloonkeeper in the ice
chest, while the looting of the place went on. In another instance a baker
was imprisoned in a hot oven. Women in their homes are thrust into
closets, gagged and bound, while their houses are ransacked and their
property stolen.

The want of an energetic police is the cause of the prevalence of such
abominable offenses as hair clipping, or the severing from the heads of
young girls upon the public streets their braids of hair. One of these
perverts was arrested and excused himself upon the ground that it was a
mania with him, and that the temptation to cut off the braids of hair from
every young girl he met, was almost irresistible. If detectives, instead
of lounging around their daily haunts for drinking purposes, loafing in
cigar stores, and playing the pool rooms, were mingling with the crowds
upon the streets, offenses of this character would be nearly impossible,
although this particular weakness seems to lead its impulsive perpetrators
to less crowded thoroughfares, and selects the hours of going to and
returning from school, as the most favorable parts of the day for its
gratification. It may be prompted by a morbid desire, but it is none the
less a serious offense, which, as yet, the criminal law has not defined,
and has therefore not provided a proper penalty for its punishment. No
evidence, so far as it is known, has yet been adduced to show that the
braids of hair are ever sold to dealers in that article, such as wig
manufacturers, etc. If such evidence should be forthcoming, the ingenuity
of the average criminal for the discovery of new methods of despoliation
will receive additional confirmation.

One peculiar method of protection to the criminal classes is in vogue. A
new thief arrives in the city; his arrival is noticed by a detective and
the fact reported to headquarters. The thief is invited to visit the
Chief. Upon his appearance, permission is given him to remain, provided he
"does not work his game" within the city. He can plunder all the
neighboring towns he may select, but the price of his remaining in
security in Chicago is, that he shall be good and gentlemanly to its
people. The "Safe Blowers' Union" has its home in Chicago, from which it
radiates, as the spokes of a wheel, to the circumference of its limit of
operations. It is a trust; a protective association. It pays for the
privilege. It attacks the country bank, blows it, in the silence of the
night, to pieces with dynamite if necessary, and murders if interfered
with. It returns with its loot to the city, makes its dividends among its
membership, police included, and awaits the pressing necessity for a
renewal of its suburban raids. It is under the king's mighty shield, the
king of the criminals, over whom he reigns with leniency, and whose gifts
he accepts with condescension.

The fakes of a great city are beyond enumeration. There are fake
information bureaus, fake advisory brokers, fake safe systems of
speculation, fake music teachers, fake medical colleges, fake law schools,
fake lawyers, fake "Old Charters for Sale," fake corporations, fake relief
and aid societies, fake preachers and fake detective agencies. The latter,
and the street fakers, are friendly with the police. So are the fruit
vendors, and the all night lunch counters on wheels. The latter stand
where the officers say they shall stand, and the location once found, the
officers at once become landlords.

As to private detective agencies, without reference to agencies of an
established local and national reputation, they are principally
constituted of thieves, pickpockets, blackmailers, and porch climbers.

In the trial of a case before the Criminal Court of Cook County, a few
months ago, a witness acquainted with their inside history, swore that
there were men connected with these fake organizations who would commit
murder for $50. They enter into conspiracies to ruin the private character
of men and women in divorce cases, and for blackmailing purposes. Three of
these hounds were lately convicted of conspiracy in less than one hour, by
a jury in the same court. These three worthies comprised the entire
agency. Their punishment was fixed at imprisonment in the penitentiary.
They were employed in getting revenge on a man, who was supposed, by their
employer, to have been the cause of his discharge from his commercial
position. In getting this revenge they fell upon their shadow, pummelled
him with great severity, and badly injured him. So grievous was the
offense, that the State's Attorney demand no less a punishment than the
jury awarded.

They manufacture testimony in divorce proceedings, at the suggestion and
upon the request of the parties willing and desirous of cutting the
matrimonial tie; or, upon the instigation of one of the parties, they will
endeavor to entrap and compromise the other. They revel in the destruction
of the character of a good woman, as the vulture revels in the foulness of
a carrion. The man of wealth must be on his guard against their attacks,
for they would as lief magnify his peccadillos into felonious crimes and
attempt his plunder by blackmail, as they would accept the earnings of the
Mistresses Overdone, the exhausted bawds, whose pimps they are.

Theirs is only another but a more vicious form of depravity than that
practiced by the panel house keepers, who send their single workers upon
the streets to entice men to their abodes, where they are met by the
expert workers of the game. While thus entrapped, and indulging in the
sensuality which aids so readily in his allurement, the adroit "creeper"
enters the room through a movable panel, or by some other prearranged
method of ingress, and takes the watch, the coin, or "any other old thing"
of value, found about the removed and scattered clothing of the greenhorn.
The police are as well acquainted with these "single workers" as they are
with the street walkers. They know their haunts, and their fields of
labor. The hotels, and places where crowds are gathered in the early
evening, attract the "single workers" as the most promising ground for a
successful capture.

"Badger games" are not infrequently played in Chicago. Such as are
successful are generally kept from the police records, through the
preference of the blackmailed subjects to say nothing about them, in dread
of their personal exposure. A man, generally one of means and standing, is
marked for conquest. The first class hotel is the scene of operations of
the female in the case. Fashionably dressed, handsome, with jewels for
adornment, she strikes up a flirtation with the selected person. Fool
like, as most men are in the case of handsome and well gowned women, he
responds to the invitation, an acquaintance is formed and an assignation
made. The place is of the woman's selection and known of course to her
paramour, styled her husband. The room is entered, compromising situations
reached, when, suddenly, the indignant husband appears, the woman screams
in terror, and a storm rages. It is calmed by the payment of the price
demanded for concealment, and the "sucker" escapes with a load removed
from both his pocketbook and his mind.

A noted instance of this kind happened to a wealthy and prominent
merchant, whose indiscretions in the acceptance of inducements for sexual
enjoyment held out to him by a stylish and beautiful woman, and his
blindness in not observing his surroundings, enabled the fake husband to
photograph him in _flagrante delicto_. Under threats to distribute the
pictures it is reported he paid $10,000 for them and the negative. This is
a fact easily susceptible of proof. One at least of these proofs did not
accompany the package he received, which was supposed to contain all of
the pictures.

Photographing from the nude is not the fad of the harlot alone. Women
infatuated with their shapes begin with the exposure of a beautiful foot,
arm or well rounded bust, then a leg, etc., etc., until they stand before
the camera almost in _puris naturalibus_. These pictures are taken for
pure self admiration, the love of self study and comparison with the forms
of celebrated actresses, or the paintings of the masters, famous in art
for their conceptions of the perfect woman. They differ from those obscene
pictures designed for sale, for which purpose the depraved couple are
photographed in situations, attitudes and conditions, natural and
unnatural, which appeal to the grossest instincts in man, and shock, also,
the moral sense of every one not in himself a sexual pervert.

The latter are eagerly sought after, are quite salable, and are carried
about the persons of fast young men about town, with intent, upon
opportunity, to influence the passions of women. They are the solace of
the aged sport, who, having lost all recollection of the ordinary affairs
of his youth, still fondly retains the memory of the amours of his younger
days, and of the orgies of his middle age. Then recalling with sadness the
first appearance of the lamentable indications of his decline, he
contentedly yields the passing of his power--"sans teeth, sans eyes, sans
taste, sans everything."

These are the men, who, if they had lived in the early days of the Roman
Empire at or about the date of the Floralian games, would have been the
principal patrons, or, if at the time of the prevalence of the
Bacchanalian mysteries, the prominent members, of societies organized for
the purpose of gratifying unnatural desires; or if they had been Romans in
the declining days of that empire would have figured as the most frantic
and most lustful of the worshippers of Priapus.

The methods of the vendors of obscene literature are innumerable, and all
are formed along the lines of extreme caution and cunning. They are keen
judges of human nature, quick to detect the inquisitive stranger, or the
sporting gent of the town, and adroit in introducing their filthy stock.
The purchaser is more than liable to be swindled in the deal, as the fakir
requires immediate concealment of the purchase, which, when examined by
the vendee in the quiet of his own room often turns out to be a harmless
work resembling only in the binding the supposed purchase.

The confidence men, who invite the incoming visitor to view the scene of
the great explosion on the lake front, and suggest trips to other places
where startling events have not occurred, discover, by skillful
questioning, the weaknesses of their dupe. They arouse his innate, but
dormant, wish to take a chance at some game that seems to him certain of a
rich return. He is easily induced to play and allowed to win a small
stake, merely to excite greater interest and establish the conviction that
he can "beat the game." Naturally he plunges ahead, until the moment
comes, set by his trappers, when he is cheated, robbed and goes "flat
broke." The dupe may, or may not, report his loss to the police. If he
does, and it happens to be one of consequence, detectives may be detailed
to search for the swindlers; but if the loss is small in amount, however
important to the loser, the dupe is more likely to be laughed at than
aided by the officers of the law.

To this class belong cabmen who rob drunken men, and "divvy" with the
police; commission houses, which secure consignments of goods for sale by
false representations; grocery grafters, who solicit throughout the
country orders for groceries, claiming to represent wholesale houses, ship
an inferior grade and collect C. O. D. at the prices charged for the
superior grade; Board of Trade sharks, who "welch" their clients' money by
charging up fictitious losses, when the figures will not appear to lie;
the false claimants for personal injuries alleged to have been caused
through the negligence of wealthy corporations, such as street car lines,
manufacturing companies and rolling mills, or by the city, from defective
sidewalks, unguarded street excavations, etc., etc.; bakers who sell
unlabeled and underweight bread; the gold brick and gold filings sharper;
the electric and mining stock swindler, and the advertiser seeking a
governess to accompany himself and family abroad. These men have
"irresistible tendencies" to work their several games. They cannot help
it, they say. Like kleptomaniacs, or "Jack the Hair Clipper," they are
impelled by nature to the commission of their crimes. In their own
judgment they ought not to be punished, because they are the victims of
defective brains. But they are just as cunning as the hair clipper, just
as conscious that they are law breakers as he was when he mailed to the
Chief of Police in his own words the following note, enclosing some of the
braids of hair he had clipped from the head of a young girl, viz:

    "A clue for J. K.'s cheap skates. Will send more when I get cheap
    stuff like this.


Of this same class are men who conduct "diploma mills" and make doctors,
especially in one day. They sell their parchments as freely as a
saloonkeeper does his beer, and then claim that because a college confers
distinctive degrees upon men of prominence, without a course of study and
examination, they are justified in launching doctors by the score upon
unsuspecting communities, "without study and examination," to discredit
the medical profession, and send men, women and children to premature
graves. Like McTeague, who acquired his knowledge of dentistry from the
seven volumes of "Allen's Practical Dentist," they obtain their knowledge
of diseases from quack publications, newspapers and magazine articles.
They use nothing but "the purest of the earth's productions in their
treatment, and no minerals or poisonous materials of any kind are ever
permitted to enter your system." Their prices range from "one dollar up."
"A positive guarantee is given in every case treated, so you have nothing
to risk in any way. Your money back on demand if not satisfied." They can
wash kidneys so clean, that if you are a woman and have not extended your
arms in years, after taking the first box of kidney pills you "can raise
them, and twist your hair," and after the second, "dress yourself, perform
your household duties," and "life will again take on a bright hue" for
you. Bald heads respond to the "remarkable effects" of their discoveries,
with joyful alacrity. Gray hair goes into hiding, and "thick and lustrous
eyebrows and eye lashes" blossom forth on one application, as lilac bushes
do in the spring time at the first touch of the warmth of the sun's rays.
Their remedies are "no longer experiments, they are medical certainties."
They "create solid flesh, muscles and strength, clear the brain, and make
the blood pure and rich." For humanity's sake, distinguished Mayors,
ex-Mayors, city treasurers, scholars, soldiers, ex-state senators and
senators, representatives, lawyers and judges, lend their beaming
countenances, when fully restored to health, for the uses of these quacks,
until the daily press has become a portrait gallery of rebuilt and
revitalized men, who, if disease had the clutch upon them they so
felicitously describe--in the stereotyped words of the quack--ought to
have been dead, buried and mourned long ago. These distinguished men in
American life, are merely selling their faces for promotion purposes, much
as the titled Englishman sells his title.

Of all the sources of police graft, in addition to pool rooms and policy
shops, gambling is the most prolific. There are in Chicago over 7,000
saloons and nearly 2,000 cigar stores. The number of gambling houses
proper is unknown, but the list swells into the hundreds. The saloon and
cigar stores have as a general rule a gambling annex. Gambling houses
proper, as known some years ago, have no longer the permanency they then
had. Roulette and faro, especially, are sleeping, and awaken only at
infrequent intervals. The negro game of craps, and the national game of
poker, particularly stud poker, have become the substitutes for the wheel
and the lay out. In two-thirds of the saloons and cigar stores poker and
stud poker are played, and in many of the saloons, especially the all
night variety, the crap table is part of the necessary equipment. It is
estimated that poker games are in progress in over eight thousand of the
saloons, cigar stores, barber shops and bakeries, every night, while
gambling houses with the roulette and faro barred, add over one thousand
to the number. Craps are shot even at the doors of some of the theaters.
All this is known to the police, tolerated by the police, and taxed by the
police. Take the average cigar store for illustration. In the rear are
rooms neatly fitted up and supplied with three or more poker tables. The
rake off to the house goes on just as in the regularly equipped gambling
house. The games are played by men of all classes in life below the
society men and men of wealth, who get their amusement at the club. The
clubs all forbid poker, but the tabooing order is "more honored in its
breach than its observance." In the cigar stores and saloons, workingmen,
artisans, clerks, and the loafing skin gambler, participate in the game.
The latter is quickly spotted, and placed under the ban. The proprietor
requires the games to be square, in so far as he can control them. The
losses of the cigar store players are more severe upon them than are
those of the gamblers who play for higher stakes. The wages of the
workingman, clerks and artisans are their only gambling capital. They have
no bank accounts to draw upon. The home suffers; wife and children are the
indirect victims. Theirs is a cash game. When wages are exhausted, the
unearned wage is mortgaged to the loan "sharks." These greedy and
heartless wretches lure the clerk earning a fair salary to borrow from
them at reasonable rates, and upon a "strictly confidential" basis. The
employer is not to know of the transaction. The clerk is soon in the
shark's strong jaws. He must pay what is demanded, or the employer, the
rules of whose establishment forbid dealings with the "shark," will be
made aware of the violation of his rules, and the clerk's embarrassment
commences. Rather than risk discharge from his position, and to escape
from the "shark" jaws, the frightened clerk pays in monthly installments
double the amount of his loan, plus a sum for a fee to an attorney who was
never retained. All this is so much blood money, flowing from the wounds
made by the "shark's" sharp teeth.

The minor is not prevented in the cigar store joints from gaming any more
than he is prevented from drinking at the saloon bar. Nightly, over this
vast city, young men are succumbing to the terrible fascination of gaming.
Nightly, temptations, almost irresistible, are preying upon their minds.
The honesty of their intentions is gradually undermined, and almost before
they awaken to a realization of the truth, they have committed some theft
and commenced a downward career. Men who filled high positions of trust
and earned large salaries are today inmates of the state penitentiary, led
away by the fascination and excitement of the gaming table. The evils of
gambling, the intensity of the love of the average man for indulgence in
its exhilaration, the wide spread use of it in the home, the club, the
stag parties, and so on down to the lowest joints in the slums, have been
the themes of every writer who attempts to depict the daily life of great

It exists in the form of prizes in progressive euchre parties, in social
gatherings, in the raffles of the church fairs, the voting for the most
popular man or woman, as city or county stenographer, popular firemen or
policemen; in guessing contests in the solution of puzzles; or wherever
the element of chance enters into the affairs of life, from which
amusement is sought to be drawn. Whether it is a wheat deal on the board
of trade in which millions are involved, or the cast of the dice by
newsboys and boot blacks in the alleys and upon the sidewalks of the city,
the controlling passion is there--the passion for gain at the whim of
chance. Judgment may prompt the wheat deal, but unless judgment promises
large profits the incentive to engage in the manipulation of the markets
is absent. The possible toil and mental worry is overlooked in the hope of
great gain without correspondingly prolonged labor. Millions fly away in
great gambling speculations as easily and as swiftly as the penny of the
newsboy takes its flight from one to the other of the inveterate little
gamblers, to be found among these sharp witted waifs of the street. It
goes on in billiard halls, where "hap hazard" is openly played; at saloon
bars where the loser at dice "pays for the drinks." It is to be seen in
beer halls, summer gardens, among well dressed people who carry the dice
with them, of the usual size, or smaller, with fancy box-guard, and who
"shake" for the drinks and dinners, not so much as a matter of gambling,
as for the zest it gives to their party, or their outing. It controls
political picnics in the fakers' attractions that follow them, and in the
prizes offered to the winner, of boys' and girls', women and fat men's,
races, or for which artistic cake walkers and ragtime dancers compete.
Civil and criminal trials are even chosen as events upon which to place a
wager. The frequency of elections, the daily horse racing contests
throughout the world, base ball games in season, prize fights between
professionals, club athletic contests, policy shops with their daily
drawings, and lotteries, all arouse the cupidity of the seeker after quick
gains without physical labor. "Bet you five" settles many a mathematical,
historical, political or economic proposition, contrary to the truth.

Races, accompanied by the usual retinue of book makers, are conducted by a
wealthy club, many of whose members are leaders in civic bodies formed
for the betterment of local government, and consequently for the
suppression of vice. Grand juries report month after month their inability
to obtain the co-operation of the police in gathering evidence against
gamblers and landlords whereon to found indictments. Each grand jury when
empanelled hears from the bench the monotonous song "Gentlemen, bucket
shops exist, investigate them," together with such musical accompaniment,
as may be added by the judge, in the way of moralizing upon their

Fashionable women have their down town clubs. There they meet, smoke
cigarettes, take their drinks from the sideboard "just like men," gamble
for excitement, lose their pin-money and diamonds with the abandon of a
virgin, "willing to be rid of her name."

The vice and fascination of gambling are so well known and understood by
great merchants that they employ a corps of detectives to keep watch over
their confidential employes, whose movements are the subject matter of
daily reports to their employers. The bond companies, which insure the
honesty of clerks and managers entrusted with the handling of money,
receive from their spotters the earliest reports of the actions of
employes indicative of living beyond the yearly salary paid them by the
houses with which they are connected.

Gambling, although condemned by all moralists as a degrading vice, is
recognized by some as aiding the development of certain qualities of
immeasurable service in the intensity of the struggle for business
existence prevailing in the aggressive commercialism of this age. Lecky
asserts: "Even the gambling table fosters among its more skillful votaries
a kind of moral nerve, a capacity for bearing losses with calmness, and
controlling the force of the desires, which is scarcely exhibited in equal
perfection in any other sphere." Whatever may be the meaning of the phrase
"controlling the force of the desires," it is certain that among the young
men of today, in all classes of society, the desires for intoxicants and
sensuality are past control when associated with gambling. In its most
seductive forms its principal aids are the gilded saloon, and the harlot's
enslaving smile. The necessity for means with which to gratify aroused
passion in both respects, comes through contact with the gaming table;
hence, the houses of ill repute, assignation houses and the innocent
looking "Hotel" nestling in the middle of the down town business blocks,
are the direct allies of the gambling hells in the development of
crime--in adding to, rather than in "controlling" the force of the
desires. "Sensuality," said a distinguished writer, "is the vice of young
men and of old nations." Another, tracing the effects of gaming on human
passions, wisely observes, "the habit of gambling is very often allied
with, and is even an incentive to, the practice of other vices, whose
darkness is beyond dispute. The ordinary aspect of a return from a race
meeting will fully confirm this. There we find that drunkenness,
licentiousness and gambling go hand in hand, a well assorted trio whose
ministry to separate passions is not inconsistent but consistent with
mutual incitement and co-operation in the destruction of the honor and
purity and strength of men."

While gambling is not now conducted "openly," a word which has reference
only to the maintenance of down town establishments in which faro and
roulette were formerly played, it is conducted under police protection all
over this city in forms more inviting, more disastrous to the embryotic
gamblers who patronize it, than if the large establishments were in full
operation as of yore. The latter could not invite the younger class of
gamblers to enter the play, because of their lack of capital; the smaller,
widely scattered, and police guarded, cigar store and saloon games, accept
smaller sums of money, parts of a dollar, for a stack of poker chips, from
the anxious entrant to the game. Prior to the last election a leading
evening newspaper accused the city executive with farming out the slum
district to two aldermen of unsavory reputation, with leave to them to
extort money from gaming houses, high and low, within its limits, for
their personal benefit, in consideration of their opposing, in the
council, the passage of ordinances relating to the extension of street car
privileges. Its condemnation of this bargain was severe, and yet, later
on, it was the most persistent of that executive's supporters for

The coon gamblers, thieves, thugs and pimps were all on the staffs of
these aldermen. They followed these worthies into the campaign, under the
leadership of the eminently respectable newspaper referred to. Inspired by
such leadership "Spreader," "Sawed Off," "The Cuckoo," "Book Agent,"
"Deacon," "Grab All," "Duck," "Shoestring," "Scalper," "Humpty," "Hungry
Sid," "Seedy," "Talky," "Whiskers," "Noisy," "Fig," "Old Hoss," "Slick,"
"Ruby," "Sunday School," and "Mushmouth," captains in the corps of sports
felt themselves respectable, led their followers from the barrel and
lodging houses with a rush to the polls, and achieved a startling victory.
Over all this horrible saturnalia of vice, the colors of the police force
float in token of protection. The brave men of that force, morally
degraded by the obedience they are compelled to yield to unworthy
superiors want merely the opportunity to perform their full duty, not only
as patrolmen but as patriotic American citizens. The time when they will
be permitted to do so seems far distant, unless an aroused public opinion
shall speedily pronounce against the further continuation of a policy of
protection to crime and debauchery supported by the men chosen to war
unceasingly with both.

The dens of the sexual pervert of the male sex, found in the basements of
buildings in the most crowded, but least respectable parts of certain
streets, with immoral theaters, cheap museums, opium joints and vile
concert saloons surrounding them, are the blackest holes of iniquity that
ever existed in any country since the dawn of history. A phrase was
recently coined in New York which conveys--in the absence of the
possibility of describing them in decent language--the meaning of the
brute practices indulged in these damnable resorts, and the terrible
consequences to humanity as a result of unnatural habits--"Paresis Halls."

No form of this indulgence described by writers on the history of morals,
no species of sodomy the debased minds of these devils can devise, is
missing from the programme of their diabolical orgies. In divine history
we read of the abominations of the strange women of Israel, with their
male companions, in their worship of Moloch, Belphegor and Baal, and of
the death penalties pronounced by Moses against the participants in them.
To suppress the brutish immorality, and prevent the spread of disease
arising from it, the Jewish law giver put to death all his Midianite
female captives except the virgins. Profane history tells of the infamies
of the Babylonian banquets, of the incestuous and "promiscuous combats of
sensuality" of the Lydians and the Persians; of the Athenian Auletrides,
or female flute players, who danced and furnished music at the banquets of
the nobility and wallowed in the filth of every sensual indecency, and of
the polluted condition of Roman life, prior to, and as the Christian era
dawned, but in all the untranslatable literature of eroticism no
description of the debaucheries of the ancients, if freely interpreted
into English from the dead languages in which they are preserved, could
depict the nastiness these yahoos are reported as having introduced into
our midst, and rendered more hateful and disgusting by the squalor of
their underground abodes. The young are lured by them, ruined in health
and seared in conscience. The very slang of the streets is surcharged with
expressions, derived from, and directly traceable to, the names of these
unmentionable acts of lechery.

Not content with the private and crafty pursuit of their calling, they
must flaunt it in the faces of the public and under the very eyes of the
police, in a series of annual balls held by the "fruits" and the "cabmen,"
advertised by placards extensively all over the city. At these
disreputable gatherings the pervert of the male persuasion displays his
habits by aping everything feminine. In speech, walk, dress and adornment
they are to all appearances women. The modern mysteries of the toilet,
used to build up and round out the female figure, are applied in the
make-up of the male pervert. Viewed from the galleries, it is impossible
to distinguish them from the sex they are imitating. Theirs is no
maid-marian costume; it is strictly in the line of the prevailing styles
among fashionable women, from female hair to pinched feet. The convenient
bar supplies the liquid excitement, and when the women arrivals from the
bagnios swarm into the hall, led in many instances by the landlady, white
or black, and the streets and saloons have contributed their quotas, the
dance begins and holds on until the morning hours approach. The acts are
those mainly suggestive of indecency. Nothing, except the gross language
and easy familiarity in deportment, coupled with the assumed falsetto
voice and effeminate manners of the pervert, would reveal to the
uninformed observer what a seething mass of human corruption he is
witnessing. As the "encyclopedia of the art of making up" puts it, "the
exposed parts of the human anatomy" usually displayed in fashionable
society are counterfeited so perfectly, the wigs are selected and arranged
with such nicety, the eyebrows and lashes so dexterously treated, and the
features so artistically touched with cosmetics, as to make it very
difficult, at first glance, to distinguish between the impostor and the
real woman. The big hands and tawdry dresses, the large though pinched
feet and the burly ankle, betray the sex of the imitating pervert.

No reason, except that the police are paid for non-interference with these
vice pitted revels, can be given for their toleration. The city's
officials are either in collusion with their projectors, they are
incompetent, or are the willing tools of these stinking body scavengers.
These beasts look with disdain upon the votaries of natural pleasures, and
have an insane pride in their hopeless degradation.

The opium joints are closely related sources of iniquity to the pervert's
haunts. Under one of the worst of the all night saloons, conducted by a
politician of the first ward, who belongs to the party of the Bath House
and Hinky Dink, and who "touched" the Hon. Richard Croker of New York for
a small loan, the largest of these execrable cellars is protected. It is
but a step from the wine rooms of the saloon to the solace of the pipe.
The depraved of both sexes in those moments when despair seizes them, when
some recollection of childhood, or of home, arouses in them the dormant
good still remaining in their hearts, when, as they look into the future,
they can discern no ray of hope, but are appalled at the frightful end
which must be theirs, shut out the horrors of their situation in life by
seeking a paradise built upon "the baseless fabric of a vision." In this
joint, since reference to it was written, a man died from the effects of
smoking the pipe. The woman who accompanied him, the bartender and the
keeper of the joint were placed under arrest. The police expressed
amazement at the revelation of the existence of the joint, as did the
proprietor of the saloon. It was, of course, closed, and a number of other
like resorts were then raided. Press comments upon this death appeared as

"In spite of the fact that there are plenty of laws against them, opium
dens and objectionable grogshops are among the hardest things in the world
to exterminate. The only reasonable explanation for this is that their
proprietors must have influence with officers who are employed by the
people to execute the laws. 'The police close these places,' said an
officer despairingly, referring to dens like that in which the man Adams
died Sunday night, 'but they spring up again in a day.'

"The police seem to be downcast over it. Yet the causes of the 'springing
up' are as plain as the nose on one's face, and the means of removing them
as evident as one's hand.

"Access to the den in which Adams died was had through the delectable O.
saloon, operated by S. V. P., and the den itself was rented by V. P. The
levee statesman says he had no idea his basement was used for an opium
den. He thought the procession of drunken and dazed men and women who
tottered through his saloon and went down his basement stairs all night
were going for their laundry.

"V. P.'s statement is entitled to as much consideration as the guileless
protestations of the gentleman who is caught with the chicken under his
coat. V. P. is responsible for the opium den and as soon as the law lays a
hand, in earnest, on the landlord the opium dens will cease 'springing

"The police knew that an opium den was running in V. P.'s basement. They
had been amply warned of it. If they had raided the place a few times and
sent the proprietor and inmates to the bridewell it would have stayed

"There is a little virtue in sticking to one's native vices. Western races
come honestly by drunkenness and gambling. But why tolerate the deliberate
importation and cultivation of this strange oriental bestiality? This
ingrafted vice must make its own soil. Why should the police treat it so
leniently? A hundred-dollar fine for every person found in an opium joint
and a modicum of police activity, with the demanding of a strict account
from the guilty landlord, will quickly put a damper on the opium dens.
Every month that they are tolerated they get a firmer root."

These resorts are patronized by others than the fallen women and the
criminal classes. Like slumming, it is a fad "to hit the pipe just once"
by some adventure seeking people in other walks of life. The habit of
opium smoking is easily acquired, and, when acquired, the smoker becomes a
slave to its use. There are between two and three hundred of these smoking
rooms in Chicago. The number of persons addicted to smoking opium cannot
be stated with accuracy. Estimates vary from ten to twenty thousand, the
number probably lies between these two estimates. In the Chinese quarters
the penetrating odor of opium smoke is plainly perceptible and is thrown
off from the garments of passing Chinamen, or is detected as one enters a
restaurant or laundry presided over by the oriental. The "dope" soon
affects the complexion, and the features wear a dejected appearance. The
movements of the victims are listless, almost lifeless. In the saloon
referred to, a constant procession of men and women, old and young, come
and go up and down the stairway to the region below. It is not guarded
with any degree of care, because it is protected from the law's
aggression, except occasionally, when by way of diversion it is pulled.
Then its patrons get a quiet tip to keep away, consequently few occupants
are found. The old pipes and a small quantity of the dope are graciously
permitted to be borne away in triumph by the officers. New supplies are
provided, and the baleful business resumes its accustomed routine.



For a generation the Common Council of Chicago has been governed by a
majority of "boodlers." Aldermen have been, in that period, fairly
representative of the wards by which they were elected. The various
nationalities, clustered together in such a manner as to give rise to the
naming of a ward according to the nativity of its inhabitants, such as
Polish, Swedish, Bohemian, German, Irish, etc., have selected as their
representatives in the Council, men who, as a rule, in private life were
honest. Their selection was usually upon strictly party grounds. The
"independent" voter, in municipal elections, is a growth of quite recent
years. The class appears to be increasing with great rapidity and to be
finding a means of concentrating its strength at the polls.

As honest as an alderman may be when he first takes his seat, he soon
finds himself surrounded by influences which appear to exert a fascinating
power over him. He must elect to be for or against the gang. Prior to the
allowance of a yearly salary the temptation to join the gang was
heightened by the promising returns, in a pecuniary way, which the gang
could almost guarantee the incoming member. An alderman "once prepossessed
is half seduced" and, since it is almost axiomatic that the total
seduction of a prepossessed alderman is a mere matter of time and
opportunity, the fall always comes when some high spirited, progressive,
and perhaps, God-professing citizen, offers from his purse a goodly
compensation to the gang for the grant of some public privilege. Thus the
public privilege is seized upon by the aldermanic gang as a private
privilege which it disposes of to the broad-clothed briber at a price
satisfactory to its members. The bribers are found in that sanctified
element of the community which attends church under the pretext of fearing
and worshipping God.

  "But yet, O Lord! confess I must,
   At times I'm fash'd wi' fleshly lust;
   An' sometimes, too, wi' worldly trust
       Vile self gets in!
   But thou rememb'rest we are dust,
       Defil'd in sin."

On secular days, its leaders, the accomplished, in thieves' parlance, the
"slick" bribers, whisper their temptations into the ears of public
servants willing to become their private tools, like the devil in the
garden of Eden, "who squat like a toad close to the ear of Eve."

The "gang" spots its man with remarkable foresight, and year after year
its power to manage public affairs to its own private advantage has
become more and more felt by the public.

For the first time in a generation, in this year 1899, it is believed an
honest majority is in control of the council. The pleasurable fact is that
the majority was elected upon a non-partisan basis, the recommendations of
a civic body, as to the honesty and capacity of the candidates in the
several wards, having been acted upon by the voters in preference to those
of party nominating conventions.

It is, however, too early to predict a new era in the history of the
council. "All signs fail in dry weather," and at this moment there are no
indications of an approaching shower of "boodle." The street car franchise
question is drowsy and will not be awakened until the corporations
controlling the lines are ready to do so. That they will not do so until
some legislation is enacted in 1901, is too apparent to require an effort
to prove. For one year at least there is a majority in the council which
will, it is hoped, protect public rights; and it is also hoped that in
1900 this majority will not only be retained, but also greatly augmented.
Projects may be hidden which in the near, or not distant, future, will
come forth to plague the consciences of a number of newly admitted members
and put their integrity to the severest of tests.

The power of the Common Council, as confided to it by legislation, over
the affairs of two millions of people, is too immense to be wielded by a
single ordinance making body. Under our form of municipal government it
controls the finances and the property of the city, regulates licenses to
sell liquor and to carry on various classes of business, such as
auctioneers, distillers, grocers, lumber yards, livery stables, money
changers, brokers, junk stores, billiard, bagatelle and pigeon-hole
tables, pin alleys, ball alleys, hackmen, draymen, omnibus drivers,
carters, cabmen, porters, expressmen, hawkers, peddlers, pawnbrokers,
theatres, shows and amusements, and many other classes of occupations.

Its power over the uses to which the streets may be applied is, in one
sense, limited; in another almost unlimited. While limited by the charter
to the power to lay them out, open, widen and improve them, prevent
encroachments and obstructions thereon, lighting and cleansing them, its
power to regulate them is almost unlimited. "To regulate" the use of the
streets is a broad power, and while several distinct grants of power of
regulation are contained in the statute, such as preventing the throwing
of ashes and garbage upon them, their use for signs, sign posts, awnings,
etc., the carrying of banners, placards, advertisements, etc., therein,
the flying of flags, banners or signs across them from house to house, or
traffic and sales upon them, nevertheless, the uses to which they may be
applied in the way of business enterprises for advertising purposes, are
as numerous and as varied as the minds of the originators of the schemes
are original and unique.

For the right to use, therefore, in a given way in a given ward, the
"gang" alderman long ago established and still maintains a schedule of
rates. They are graduated from the insignificant charge for permission to
"string a banner," or establish a fruit stand, up to the highly
respectable "rake off" demanded for the use of them for switch tracks, or
street railway purposes. It is not so many years ago that a leading
morning newspaper furnished the public with some information on this
subject, upon the occasion of the passage of an ordinance granting
valuable privileges to a railway corporation. Four members of the council,
not the "Big Four" of olden times, but the modern "Big Four" leaders of
"de gang," were said to have received for their manipulation of the
ordinance, and the organization of their followers for its support, the
quite comfortable sum of $25,000 each. Their supporters were to receive
$8,000 each for their votes, while the "go between" received $100,000 and
a few city lots. The standard price per vote for valuable franchises is
$5,000, yet in a pinch of private necessity, a few votes can be commanded
at lower figures. The contingency of a possible veto is provided for, so
that in that event one-fourth must be added for the second vote to pass
the measure over the veto. Thus it has gone on not only with respect to
street railway grants, but also for electric lighting, telephone
conduits, gas pipes, private telephone wires and that long list of uses
devised by business men for the advertisement of their personal interests.
The peanut stand privilege, the fruit stand privilege, the bootblack
privilege, the banner privilege, all pay cash to some "gang" alderman, as
do the policy rooms, pool rooms and saloons with wine room privileges.

It is an amusing, as well as an instructive sight, to witness a meeting of
the council upon an occasion when some well announced "boodle" ordinance
is called up for passage. The plan of campaign has all been arranged
beforehand, and the floor leader selected to command the movement. Let it
be an ordinance for granting the right to a street railway company to lay
down its tracks, and operate its line, in a given street. The
preliminaries have all been gone through with, the signatures of property
owners verified, and the price to be paid for favorable votes agreed upon.
When the ordinance is taken up its opponents are generally in a
disorganized condition. There is among them, as a general rule, no
coherence of opposition. The main object to be attained, viz., the defeat
of the ordinance as it is presented, is lost sight of in the effort "to
make records" by the introduction of amendments, reflecting some
individual idea of the member who offers it, without having submitted it
to his associate opponents for their judgment. Consequently they disagree
among themselves and fall to fighting each other, thereby weakening their
opposition. Meanwhile the "gang" sits smilingly by, under instructions to
vote down all amendments. When one is offered, of comparative
unimportance, the quick-witted lobbyists of the corporations, Jew and
Gentile, convey a tip to the leader of the "gang" that the amendment "is
all right," "quite agreeable," "will be accepted," etc., whereupon the
gang's leader obligingly informs the chair that it is his profound belief
the amendment is a very proper one, and it is graciously accepted. The
opposition having some little encouragement, present other amendments,
which are, of course, defeated. Sometimes debate is permitted. If the
speeches could be reported verbatim and the words spelled out as
pronounced, it would make Mr. Dooley reflect on the style of modern
oratory, as presented by the "mimber from Archey Road." The question
coming to a vote upon the passage of the ordinance, the roll call begins.
From the "Bath House" on the right comes, on the first call, the familiar
"Aye." That response is repeated by every member of the gang without
explanation, and in a stolid way, indicating contempt for public opinion.
The measure is now out of the way. Preparations are made for the next.
Settlements have to be made and everybody satisfied before new matters
involving "boodle" can be presented. Occasionally there is a loud "kick"
by some slow-witted member who fails to secure his full share of the
"swag," but he is usually placated in some manner best known to the
combination, and business goes on in the old way. The division and
distribution of the "boodle" are matters of great secrecy and adroit
management. It is forced into the pockets of some, or finds its way into
them in mysterious ways. It is discovered under a plate at a restaurant,
or under a pillow at bedtime; but it seldom passes into the open hand,
held rearwards, as the caricaturist pictures the "boodler."

A newspaper thus spoke of the members of the council belonging to the
party it represents. "The average ---- representative in the city council
is a tramp, if not worse. He represents or claims to represent a political
party having respectable principles and leaders of known good character
and ability. He comes from twenty-five or thirty different wards, some of
them widely separated, and when he reaches the City Hall, whether from the
west, the south or the north division, he is nine cases out of ten a
bummer and a disreputable who can be bought and sold as hogs are bought
and sold at the stockyards. Do these vicious vagabonds stand for the
decency and intelligence of the party in Chicago?"

This is a picture drawn a few years ago, but it correctly sketches a
number of the hold over members of the present council, and a few of the
old timers re-elected.

The new members of the council, one-half in number, are committed, by
their ante-election pledges, to the policy of refusing the grant of
privileges to individuals or corporations without compensation to the
public. Whatever of benefit the public may derive from this policy, it is
not quite clear that it will operate as a preventive of "boodling." The
ingenuity of the "boodler" combines the cunning of the sneak thief, with
the boldness of the highway robber in devising the ways and means to find
and secure his "stuff." It is a matter of congratulation that the boodling
species is dwindling away from the public view. How long it will remain in
concealment depends upon how long the independent voter wishes to keep it

The department of the city government to which is committed the control of
its public improvements consists of a number of bureaus. The Commissioner
of Public Works controls, as part of his executive department, the City
Engineer, Superintendent of Streets, of Street and Alley Cleaning, of
Water, of Sewerage, of Special Assessments and of Maps. When it is
considered that this means the care and management of 1,111 miles of
improved and 1,464 miles of unimproved streets, 112 miles of improved and
1,235 miles of unimproved alleys, making a total of 3,924 miles of
streets and alleys, the letting of contracts for their repair, improvement
and cleaning, and all the details of engineering, sewerage and water pipe
extension bureaus, involving the expenditure of millions of dollars, the
vastness of the public interests entrusted to the Commissioner may be
realized. Under every administration the department is assailed for
frauds, stuffed pay rolls, favoritism and boodling. The administration now
in power (and which has been in power for two years) has not escaped
criticism. Powerful as that criticism was, and founded in truth as it was,
it apparently did not affect the minds of a majority of the voters.
Contracts were let by this administration, in direct violation of the law
which provides for a letting to the lowest bidder, after advertising for
bids, where the amount is in excess of $500. Yet a political favorite, who
was himself at one time spoken of as a probable appointee to the office of
Commissioner, but who stepped aside, as it is charged, as the result of a
deal, obtained thereby a contract for street repairs amounting to
$230,000, which was never advertised for, but let to him privately in such
a manner so that the vouchers in payment were drawn in sums less than $500
each. So grossly evasive of the law was this transaction, that it involved
the stoppage of payment of the warrants by the Comptroller of the city. A
re-measurement of the work was ordered by him. This developed the
astonishing fact that, even if the contract had been properly let, there
was nevertheless an overcharge, swindling in its nature, to the extent of
$60,000. The Comptroller was, therefore, compelled to withhold his
sanction to the payment of the vouchers. In some manner, however, they
were paid after some slight reductions were made. This was a blow at the
sterling integrity of the Comptroller, whose public services in thoroughly
reorganizing his office, and placing it on a business basis, and whose
devotion to public interests cost him his life, are the only conspicuous
acts, free from shame, egotism, or corruption, of an administration to
which he loaned the strength of his good name, and upon which he shed the
splendor of his ability and personal honor. He will be long remembered as
the one oasis in a desert of maladministration. Both in private and in
public walks Robert A. Waller lived an honorable life. He died mourned by
all who knew him.

  "His life was gentle, and the elements
   So mixed in him, that Nature might stand up
   And say to all the world: This was a man!"

The attempt to let the contract for the use of a tug for service to the
cribs, or water intakes, in the lake, was another breach of the law so
flagrant, as to attract public attention for a time. Its consummation was
prevented by the threat of court proceedings, which, at once, led to the
insertion of an advertisement for bids. But here again fraud was
attempted. The specifications were so drawn as to call for boats of
certain dimensions, exact compliance with which was almost impossible,
except to one towing company to which originally the contract was about to
be let without a bid. This company's bid was $13,000; the lowest bid was
$3,500. Still the city authorities hesitated to award the contract to the
lowest bidder, but public opinion, and the known ability of the bidder to
fulfill his contract regardless of his boats' dimensions, compelled the
letting to him, thereby saving to the city the sum of $9,000. Vouchers
about which there was a doubt as to their legality, have been paid to a
contractor, who was appointed a brigadier general of volunteers, but who
resigned the appointment immediately, it is said, for business reasons, or
because he could not be assigned to a pleasing command. These vouchers
amounted to $50,000, and their payment, it is rather uncharitably said,
induced the gallant contractor to become an independent voter. There is no
difference between the manufacture of an independent voter in this manner,
and his manufacture by putting him on the pay-roll without work. This
method seems to have been adopted by the public works department of the
city government, following, perhaps, an old precedent.

The purchase of water meters, under specifications with which only one
company could comply, and the laying of water pipes without letting
contracts in a lawful manner, are notorious instances of unblushing
frauds committed by this department. It is almost incredible that a dynamo
should be bought in parts, so that it could be purchased from a friend,
and paid for in sums less than $500; yet this was done. Thus a piece of
machinery having a fixed price as a whole, was not only purchased
illegally, but paid for in such a manner that its price, as a whole, was
doubled when bought in pieces. So it was with other electrical apparatus;
so it was with the protection to fire hydrants. Instead of advertising for
bids for the work of shielding the fire hydrants from the severity of the
winter's cold, they were divided up into companies like those of a
regiment of soldiers, each having its contract commander, who received his
pay on vouchers each calling for less than $500. The present commissioner
is an old politician, who has held several official positions. It is but
just to say of him, that, with the general public, he bears a good
reputation. His political enemies are not by any means complimentary in
their allusions to him, those particularly in the ranks of his own party.
He is energetic, self confident, amiable, and a particularly able bluffer
when occasion demands it. Without being profound he is efficient, and
without being remarkably efficient, he is not at all valueless.

The Civil Service Commission has reached its present age, nearly five
years, after suffering all the diseases incident to poor nursing. It is
not by any means a vigorous child as yet, but as it gains in strength it
will perhaps grow in wisdom. When it recognizes the fact that the people
permitted it to be born, it will also recognize the further fact that its
parents require of it obedience to their wishes. They demand the
enforcement of the Civil Service Law as it is written, for the public good
and not for partisan advantage. They would impress upon the commission the
conviction of their belief that without a properly administered civil
service law, municipal government is a menace to republican institutions;
that without it the experiment of municipal ownership of "public
utilities" is hazardous, and that the increasing intelligence of the
people and their wider knowledge of the science of government have taught
them that the political maxim, "to the victors belong the spoils," is a
relic of the barbaric days of politics, in which wide open primaries,
stuffed ballot boxes, captured polling places, and thugs were the
governing elements of elections.

The civil service law was placed upon the statute book at the instance of
those who had made the study of municipal government a duty, and who from
that study realized that the growth of great cities, in population,
material wealth and industrial development, demands commensurate changes
in the manner of governing such communities. The basic principle of the
law is the elimination of the spoils system, and the substitution of the
merit system. The banishment of the professional politician, that
individual who lives upon the spoils of office, is a result certain of
accomplishment under the proper administration of this beneficent statute.
Foreseeing this result, the professionals in all parties united against it
and have sought, and are still seeking, to undermine its provisions and
destroy its utility.

The law was put into operation by a board of commissioners not one of
whom had ever been an active party man. No body of men ever met for the
performance of a public duty, who were less tainted with partisanship than
were these gentlemen. They studied the law carefully, and acquainted
themselves with its text and its spirit. Their selection was satisfactory
to the public, and was a guarantee of honest endeavor to place the affairs
of the city under the control of the law's terms, in all the departments
to which those terms applied, and which could be brought within the
classified service. They formulated adequate rules, after consultation
with able men familiar with the workings of the federal civil service law.
Open to criticism as some of these rules were as being more theoretical
than practical, nevertheless they were built upon the basis of selection
by merit alone, regardless of politics, and were adapted solely to that
end. For two years it adhered to the law, enforcing against the party to
which the majority of the commissioners belonged a rule which required
that no person holding an office which fell within the classified service
could take an examination for that position without resigning the
position. The law continued to work during 1895 and 1896 as smoothly as
new machinery can. In the Spring of 1897 a new city administration came
into power of a different political complexion from that under which the
law was placed in force. It was then found, to the amazement of the
public, which, however, in the hurly-burly of life soon subsided, that
these commissioners were incompetent. One placed his resignation in the
hands of the Mayor and was almost immediately appointed to the office of
comptroller by that officer. The efficiency of his service in his new
office, and the quality of his character, have already been referred to in
these pages.

Suddenly the same Mayor addressed the late associates of the Comptroller
as follows, viz.: "You will please take notice that I have elected to, and
I do hereby remove you from the position of Civil Service Commissioner in
and for the City of Chicago for the following causes. First: You are and
have been in your performance of the duties of said office incompetent.
Secondly: In the performance of said duties you have been guilty of
neglect of duty." A new commission was appointed, which proceeded to
reverse the rule above referred to, whereupon nearly all the employes of
the city were discharged. No examinations having been held for these
positions there was no eligible list from which to select their
successors. Consequently, in such a case, appointments were made under a
section of the statute to fill the vacancies for sixty days, during which
time examinations were held to obtain an eligible list. These appointments
were, of course, all made from the Mayor's party. He could not do
otherwise in view of the public utterances he had made during his
campaign, when he said if he retained any employes appointed under a prior
administration of a different political belief, "it will only be for
menagerie purposes."

When the examinations were held and a list certified, it was found that in
every instance the sixty day men passed at its head. Such a uniformity of
results was in itself evidence of a disregard of the law. From the highest
position for which examinations were held, down through all grades, to
the lowest, such as barn men, the sixty day man was always marked up to
the head of the list.

During the years 1897 and 1898, no less than seven different persons were
selected as civil service commissioners, until a board was found willing
to act upon the Mayor's interpretation of the statute. One instance of the
abuse of the law will suffice to show the methods resorted to, for the
purpose of selecting a party man to fill a vacancy in office. An
examination was held of applicants for the position of "foreman of street
lamps repairs." The man who passed at the head was a sixty day man. At
thirteen years of age he became a sheet metal worker's apprentice, and
with the exception of a short period when he was engaged in keeping a
saloon and made a failure of it, he continued to follow that occupation.
He is a heeler for one of the most notorious of the aldermanic gang. It
will be observed in contrasting the questions asked him, and those asked
his superior, an applicant for the office of Superintendent of Street
Lamp Repairs, that a lower degree of educational qualifications is
required of the Superintendent, that of his subordinate, the foreman of
the gang of repairers. These questions were propounded to the foreman,

"If the hypothenuse of a right angle triangle is 35 feet and the base 21
feet, what is the altitude?

At 30 cents a square yard what is the cost of lining with metal a cubical
room 13 feet long?

If it takes eight men five and one half days to make 100 lamps, how long
will it take six men to make 350 lamps?

A building is 302 feet high; the walk and court measure 90 feet; what is
the length of a straight line running from the top of the building to the
opposite curb?

At 25 cents a square yard what is the cost of a sheet of iron sufficient
for the construction of a cylinder pipe closed at both ends 28 feet long,
the diameter of whose base is 28 inches?

What is the capacity in gallons of a sphere 15 inches in diameter?

If 24 gallons of water flow through a 2 inch pipe each minute how many
gallons will flow through a 3 inch pipe under the same conditions?

What is the length of the diameter of a circle whose area equals 1,386
square yards?

Name the materials used in the construction of a street lamp?

Name three essential qualifications requisite for a foreman?"

A street lamp could not be repaired, as a matter of fact, by a person
unable to answer these questions! This truth must be apparent to any
unbiased mind!

All the other applicants could answer the last two questions only, simply
because they were honest; but the metal worker answered them all, and was
marked 100, although he had not been at school since he was thirteen years
of age, and does not appear to have been much of a student since that

The Superintendent's examination ran as follows, viz.:

"What are the duties of Superintendent of Lamp Repairs?

What experience have you had to qualify you for this position?

How many lamps should a tinner complete in a day?

How many signs should an etcher complete in a day?

If a special assessment were levied and confirmed, what would your duty be
to secure the erecting and lighting of the lamps?

On what part of the city property should those posts be set?

If posts were to be erected how would you determine what class of posts
would be required?

What is the general duty of Superintendent of Lamp Repairs regarding
repairs to lamps?"

The attacks on the civil service law come from all sources. A party
convention in 1898, in its platform said, "We pronounce the Civil Service
Law inefficient, mischievous and hostile to the regnant principles of
popular government. We demand its repeal."

The next convention of the same party resolved: "We pledge the ------party
to the strict enforcement of this, the Civil Service Law."

The Mayor's consistency and that of his party are identical. If the two
removed commissioners were incompetent and neglectful, so must the third
have been, and yet that equally incompetent and neglectful commissioner
was appointed to an office, the very highest in the gift of the Mayor.

Acting upon the demand of his party for the repeal of this law, the
Corporation Counsel began his attacks upon it by a multiplicity of
opinions calculated to gradually remove it from the statute book.
Ordinances were passed in accordance with these opinions, creating new
heads of departments and exempting them from the civil service rules.
Positions, filled by civil service appointees, were abolished. The same
positions were re-created under a new name, filled by a sixty day man who
was then examined, and certified to the head of the list. The police
department, the city treasurer, and other branches of the local government
which have attempted by judicial proceedings to emasculate the civil
service law, have in every instance been foiled by the decisions of the
Supreme Court.

The Special Assessment Bureau of the board of public works, has for many
years, in conjunction with the alderman, had the origination and passage
of ordinances for paving streets, laying sewers, sidewalks, drains, water
supply and service pipes, etc. Under a law recently enacted, and now in
force, all ordinances originate with a board, named the Board of Local
Improvements. The right of petition on behalf of the property owners, is a
feature of the new law which smiles at the property owner, while it "winks
the other eye." It holds out a hope, as do other provisions of the law, of
reduced assessments, but, so far, the practical benefit to the owner of
real estate has not been made apparent. Since the year 1861 and including
the year 1897, the enormous sum of $90,402,790.44 has been levied upon
real estate for the payment of public improvements. During the year ending
December, 1891, the amount levied was over six millions of dollars, and
during the following year ending December 31, 1892, just preceding the
World's Fair, the assessments reached the sum of over fourteen millions of
dollars. Reference has already been made to frauds in the letting of
contracts for street improvements. They are split up and let to favorites
without advertising, so that each payment will fall under $500, although
the improvement may be a mile in length. The asphalt ring is just as
potent as ever. It fights every effort of other dealers in asphalt to
procure a contract and it generally succeeds in foisting upon the people
its quality of asphalt at a higher price than that offered at a lower
price, by other bidders, perhaps equally as good in quality and which has
been successfully used in other cities. Failing recently to stampede the
board, the ring accepted contracts at a figure submitted by its
competitors. This, however, is a familiar trick of trusts, and will last
for a very short period of time, unless the board manifests a disposition
to consider the merits of the material of competing contractors. The ring
will not abandon its struggle so easily. It is powerful, uniting in its
behalf the combined efforts of politicians of all parties, who are
connected with the asphalt corporations as stockholders and officers. The
Board of Local Improvements not long since made the announcement that it
was preparing to levy special assessments during the coming year to the
amount of $10,000,000. The people may weep and protest, while the
contractor smiles and urges.

The one department of the city government, unsurpassed by any of its kind
in the world, is the Fire Department. The officers and men are of the best
material, of the highest courage, and serve under the strictest
discipline. They are fire fighters, not politicians. Their chief is a man
of independence of character, honest, taciturn, a strict disciplinarian--a
general in command of a corps of which he is justly proud. He tolerates no
political interference with his men. In this respect, particularly, he is,
always was, and always will be sustained by the entire community. Any
attempted management of the department which would tend to lessen its
efficiency meets with the chief's stern resistance. Aside from his own
moral and physical courage, his admirable sense of duty, and the fact that
the public honor him and support him, he has the powerful assistance of
the board of underwriters in any case of damaging intermeddling with his
command. Knowing his worth and the merits of his department that
intermeddling would bring, instantly, a threat of the rise in insurance
rates from this board, a threat which would touch the pockets of many
property owners, and consequently one which would solidify them in support
of the chief. He shares with his men the dangers of their calling. The
gallant men, who during the past year lost their lives in saving the
property and lives of others, testified by their sacrifice to the
hazardous nature of that calling. A recital of the heroic deeds of those
men would not be surpassed by the stories of gallantry in the field of
battle with which the pages of American history are replete. While Dennis
J. Swenie's strength holds out he will command his famous batallions to
his own honor, and to that of the city of which he is so faithful and
loyal a citizen.

Even the possibility of his being supplanted in his command, which
appeared recently in the failure to reappoint him at the first opportunity
afforded the Mayor, aroused the people to a united protest, which,
indications prove, was timely and effective. The omission to send his name
to the council with the first of the Mayor's appointees, may have been, as
it was claimed "accidental," but it is nevertheless the belief that that
omission was in the nature of a test of public opinion. If so, the power
of public opinion retained him in command, despite political purpose to
the contrary.

With the exception of this department all the others of the city are
merely run on political lines, as adjuncts of the political party in
power, notwithstanding the civil service law. The abuses of that law may
become fewer in number, not through any merit of the present board, but
because it has about exhausted itself in filling all the offices with men
of one political faith by means already explained.

The departments of the County government under a feeble civil service law,
different from that applicable to the city, are conducted in the same
manner as those of the city for the benefit of machine politicians and
their regiments of ward and township workers. They are as corruptly
managed as those of the city government.

The institutions at Dunning for the insane and the poor, are generally
managed by ward politicians, whose appointments are in the nature of a
reward for party services, or rather, services to some particular boss.
Recent reports of grand juries note some improvement in their conduct. On
the whole, however, they are regarded in the nature of spoils by the ring
of party loafers, whose views of government consist, mainly, in doing the
greatest good to the greatest number of the ring.

The traffic in dead bodies, or "cadavers" goes on, as it did when exposure
came about a year ago through detected shipments to the State of Missouri
for the use of a medical college in one of the towns of that state. These
pauper dead "escape," in the language of the employes, from the "killer"
ward in which they are stored, a place selected to lay out a corpse suited
for the dissecting table. It has been a matter of more than rumor and
given currency by the press, that subjects for the dissecting table are
selected before the breath has left their bodies. This statement finds
more or less verification in the disclosures of the Missouri case before
alluded to.

Contractors for county supplies pay a percentage of their prices to a
county ring, and, consequently, a poorer quality of food, fuel and
medicines, is furnished to these institutions than the contracts call for,
which cost the contractor an additional sum by way of boodle to obtain

The sheriff's office has had a standing shame for many years in the cost
of dieting prisoners. The county board allows the sheriff for dieting,
twenty-five cents a day for each prisoner confined in the county jail. The
cost of a day's dieting is estimated not to exceed ten cents, according to
the greed of the sheriff. From this one source alone the sheriff's office
is regarded as one of the most lucrative offices in the county. The excess
above the actual cost is clear profit to the sheriff.

Some of the bailiffs of the courts have been discovered within the past
year as jury bribers, willing to take any side offering the most
lucrative terms. The principal in this disreputable business fled, and
now an unseemly quarrel is raging between the city's detective department,
and the sheriff's and state attorney's office as to which was to blame for
that escape.

The judges of the Courts of Cook County are men of integrity. Some are
able jurists, but of late years the standard for judicial qualifications
has been, through party machine nominations, considerably lowered. These
judges are charged by the law with some duties the nature of which is
purely political. Thus, the selection of justices of the peace for the
city, the poor man's court, is confided to them. No scandals, so far, have
attended the exercise of this duty, but their selections have not, as a
general rule, earned the confidence of the people. "J. P." means nowadays
one who will give judgment for the plaintiff. The evil practices, the
frauds and swindles, which have their origin in the system now prevailing
for the conduct of justice courts, has given rise to strenuous efforts to
reform them by state legislation. This will ultimately be accomplished.
While the members from the rural districts, in each recurring state
legislature, are difficult to manage, in the one session of their term in
the lower house in matters affecting a large city, nevertheless, when
fully informed, they have granted such remedial legislation to Chicago for
which its civic bodies have made timely application.

A new revenue law has just gone into operation, designed to abolish the
inequalities of taxation which grew up and were fraudulently fostered
under the repealed law. What its effect will be it is difficult to
predict. The personal property holders, those with long lines of stocks,
bonds, valuable house furnishings, large bank accounts, and concealed
wealth, are very likely to feel unkindly towards the stringent provisions
of this law. They have been evading their just share of taxation for
years. They are today the most ignorant of the many people calling at the
assessor's office to make out and verify under oath their respective
schedules, simply because it is so many years since they were called upon
to pay a personal property tax, that they have forgotten all about the

The holders of large real estate interests, who, for years, have been
paying assessors to exempt them from assessment, or reduce their
valuations, are, also, most probably confronted with the impossibility of
escape from paying their proper share of general taxes. This iniquitous
system has been denounced in the press for years. A year ago a town
assessor was convicted of the offense, and heavily fined by the court. The
tax evaders are as vicious a class in a community as are sneak thieves.
Their payment to assessors to lower their valuations is the worst species
of corruption. The payrolls of the town assessors present the most
conspicuous instances of corruption to be found in any department of the
county, or city, government. Many men are carried on their pay rolls and
paid from five to ten dollars per day who never do one moment's work in
the making of the assessment. They are simply being nursed for political
purposes. In one of the wealthiest towns a payroll fell under the writer's
observation, which showed a clear steal of $2,200 for a period of two
weeks only. These officials designated a personal friend to whom all
money was paid. One-fourth of these payments were handed over to the
"solicitor" who brought in the "business," one-fourth to the "friend," and
the remaining one-half went to the assessor. Men in high station in
national and state councils, state and national committeemen, city and
county officers, lawyers, politicians and sporting men were engaged in
this business of boodling, throwing upon the owners of small real estate
interests more than their fair share of the burdens of taxation. In an
address delivered in this city by an ex-President of the United States, he
said that as Lincoln had declared this country could not exist half slave
and half free, so he declared "it could not exist half taxed and half
free" from taxation, that the sin of tax evasion was a new danger to the
integrity of the Republic and that its evil lay in the "evasion of just
taxation by the rich, and the consequent thrusting of an extra burden on
the poor." The corporations engaged in the manufacture of gas, in the
management of traction companies, of live stock exchanges, of packing
companies, railroads, steel companies, sleeping car builders and
merchants owning large landed properties, have had their agents regularly
employed in procuring a reduction of their valuations for assessment, who
were nothing more nor less than bribers. Whether these crimes will be as
freely attempted under the new law remains to be developed, but some of
the distributors of personal property schedules are again playing their
old trick of taking money from the poor under promise of returning them as
non-holders of taxable personal property. An arrest of one of these
robbers, who had accepted one dollar from each of a number of women has
been made. The men elected as assessors and as members of the board of
review are men of good character and able judgment. The only indication of
danger is that a political boss who has lived and thrived at the public
crib and whose political methods have always been unscrupulous has been
appointed chief clerk of the board of review. His salary is large enough
to keep him out of temptation, if he has not forgotten the ways of the
righteous. He was an expert "adjuster" in politics. In assessments the
"adjuster's" occupation should now be gone. The difficulty lies in
teaching an old adjuster new tricks. The old system of assessment for
general taxation was denounced by an official of the county as "nothing
more nor less than a gigantic legalized swindle, reeking in corruption, a
harbor for 'grafters,' 'petty thieves,' and 'sharks,' and an enormous,
unnecessary and galling burden on the tax payers, the expense of which has
no justification in reason and should have none in law."

The new system abolishes but one of the evils of the old. In place of town
assessors, a board of five assessors is established whose work is subject
to review by another composed of three members. Their labors are, in turn,
passed upon by the State Board of Equalization, before which for years
railroads and other corporations have had their adjusters, agents or
brokers, and before which they will continue to appear and accomplish, as
they always have accomplished, the placing of the lowest possible
valuations upon railroad properties, and a reduction of capital stock
valuations. The board of assessors now values all the real estate in Cook
county in place of the assessors in the separate towns within the county.

These towns, six of which are wholly within the city limits, are, through
their officials, plunderers of the public, robbing the funds of the towns
by increasing their salaries out of all proportion to the services they
are required to render, and which could well be dispensed with to the
greatest advantage of the people. In the year 1898 they cost the treasury
$395,411.55. Absolutely nothing is apparent as the result of this looting
of public funds. They occupy, in the business parts of the city, expensive
offices, which are open for public use not to exceed four months in the
year, and afford, for the remaining months, club accommodations for the
hangers on of the political crooks who manage party affairs. Card playing
and gambling are their principal occupations. In the division of the
proceeds of the robbery, the justices of the peace participate. They are,
by virtue of their offices, members of the town board. Their services are
not worth ten dollars per annum, but they receive compensation ranging
from $200 to $500 per annum.

As illustrating the tendency of these town boards, from which the
assessment of property for taxation has now been taken away, the following
are the valuations of real estate and personal property for the past three
years as equalized by the state board. The foundation for the assessments
was laid by the town assessors. It will be observed that, notwithstanding
the increase in population, the value of real estate and personal property
has been steadily declining. The decline is a measure of the boodling
propensities of the assessors. Their percentage of award "no fellah can
find out."


                                  1896.           1897.           1898.
  Real estate                 $195,684,875    $184,632,905    $178,801,172
  Personal property             34,959,299      33,594,167      29,601,393
  Population, school census      1,616,635                       1,851,588

The value of the taxable real estate in Chicago, according to these
figures, decreased in two years $18,883,703, and the value of taxable
personal property $5,357,906. During the same period the population
increased 234,953. As wealth and population increase in Chicago, values of
property decline. At ten per cent of its cash value, which is the basis
adopted by assessors for years for taxation value, taxable real estate in
Chicago is, in round numbers worth $1,788,000,000.

It is impossible to average the per cent paid for reductions in valuations
to the assessors. Of the eighteen millions in reduced valuations in 1898,
as compared with 1896, it is safe to say five millions were purchased. As
the rate of taxation was between nine and ten dollars on one hundred
dollars the amount of taxes paid by those who should not have paid them
was $500,000. The assessors were "not working for their health," but for
about fifty per cent of the taxes saved to their principals, with the aid
of the friend and the agent who brought the business, or say about
$250,000 of "graft."

The coroner's office is also one which not infrequently gives rise to
scandals. There are open charges made that some of the juries, called by
that official, have found exonerating, instead of incriminating, verdicts
for a money consideration in the division of which the office
participated. An unseemly quarrel between the coroner and the police
revealed the fact that both have favorite undertakers to whom the bodies
of those meeting sudden death from accident, or otherwise, are taken. In a
dispute as to which should control a corpse a most painful truth became
public that it was carted about from one undertaking establishment to
another, and that even the law was invoked to obtain possession of it by
means of a writ of replevin.

The office of the recorder of deeds is one of the most important in the
county affairs. Generally speaking it is well conducted, although its
records are not as presentable to the eye as are the books of a
first-class mercantile firm. Female labor is employed mostly in recording,
i. e., spreading an instrument at large upon the records, while male labor
keeps up the tract books, indices, etc. The employes of both sexes are
favorites of political bosses. The abstract branch of the business of this
office is a sublime failure. For years it has cost the county a large sum
of money to make good the deficiency--expenses largely exceeding earnings.
Its abstracts cannot compete with those of private corporations, which
employ experts in that business, and pay them in proportion to their
ability, merit alone being their recommendation. The abstract makers
employed by the county are shiftless and incompetent. The Torrens system,
or the registration of titles, will, in time, but not for many years to
come, supersede the abstract system, but not until the public shall have
gained more confidence in its merits than it has yet acquired in
recorder's abstracts of title.

It was not the purpose of these pages to pursue inquiry into the
corruption existing in both the municipal and county governments. The
primary intent was to refer to the vices and crimes which prevail by
reason principally of police partnership in their joint proceeds. Both
governments are corrupt, and appear to be so because the people consent
they shall be corrupt. The lessons the public learn from day to day,
through the columns of the press, are forgotten. When election day
approaches a revival of the facts through the press is then charged to
political trickery, and its charges of maladministration are disregarded
as being invented for party purposes. The press condemns while the evils
are prominent, then it condones, and becomes the subservient and truculent
supporter of the men who permitted vice and debauchery to attain its
stalwart growth. The people believe there is a trust press, banded
together to obtain favors through school leases, bank deposits of public
funds and personal appointments in return for services to be rendered
their municipal benefactors. The only non-member of the trust is the organ
of the street car corporations and such exposes of villainy as it may
present are set down as means to an end--the effort to obtain public
privileges without compensation to the city. Newspapers, therefore, in
municipal affairs no longer lead public opinion. They cannot again become
its leaders until they free themselves from the suspicion of conserving
their own interests by the sacrifice of those of the public. The greatest
of them delivered but feeble blows during the recent mayoralty campaign,
while the lighter weights, who were fighting for a candidate for renewed
honors, had been for two years most unmercifully pounding him for his
persistent assistance rendered to the vicious classes, in their indulgence
in crime and debauchery.

The various civic societies formed for the improvement of municipal
government, pay attention solely to matters removed from the insidious and
ceaseless advances of crime, close their eyes to evidences of disease
apparent on the body politic, and merely dream of higher ideals. They
leave to one society the task of the suppression of vice. They give to it
neither sympathy nor pecuniary assistance. It begs its way in meetings of
its sympathizers, warns the community of the prevalence of crime and
indecency, but the community rushes on in the business struggles of the
day from year to year, trusting--as it always has trusted--in its public
servants for the full performance of their sworn duties--a trust so
constantly violated that municipal government has become merely the
synonym of the rule of the criminal classes.

A special session of the Illinois Legislature was called by the Governor
in 1897. Among the subjects included in the call was one suggesting the
passage of an act "to establish boards providing for non-partisan police
in all cities of the State containing over 100,000 inhabitants." Pursuant
to the recommendations of the executive's message, a resolution was passed
by the Senate for the appointment of a committee of seven members of that
body, which recited the recommendation of the Governor; that a bill had
been introduced providing for the establishment of non-partisan police
boards in all cities containing the necessary population; that charges and
scandals had arisen in regard to the management of the police force in
Chicago, and that the committee be clothed "with full power to act" and to
investigate "fully the subject" and report its findings as early as
possible to the Senate at the special session.

The committee consisted of one people's party, one democratic senator and
five republican senators. From the moment of its selection it was branded
as a partisan committee, appointed not so much to obtain information
which would enable an unbiased judgment to be formed upon the merits of
the proposed bill as to accumulate political capital for the use of the
republican party. The committee proceeded with its investigation, and on
February 10th, 1898, submitted its report, which was adopted February
15th, 1898, by a vote of thirty-three republicans and one democrat, eight
democrats voting in the negative. The only democrat voting in the
affirmative was a member of the reporting committee.

On the last day of the special session, no legislation having been enacted
on the subject of the proposed bill, a resolution was introduced providing
for a continuance of the committee, which recited that it had "unearthed a
most deplorable state of affairs in the management and control of the
police force of Chicago," and that "the most flagrant violations of the
civil service law have been brazenly practiced by those in authority in
control of that police force." Nothing resulted from the latter resolution
continuing the committee.

The report covered the investigations of the committee into the
operations of the civil service law, and the manner of its enforcement,
finding that it was a plaything in the hands of the party then in power,
and an object of constant and premeditated attack. It also found the
grossest abuses in the management of the police pension fund and in the
workings of the police force as an organization. That crime was protected
and lewdness tolerated by it, and that in fact it was a powerful ally of
the criminal classes, and practically made an unofficial livelihood off
unfortunate women of the town, thieves and their fences, gambling resorts
and their keepers, and the patrons and keepers of the all night saloons.
It found the Chief of Police was cognizant of the facts, and yet took no
steps to correct them. That Chief from whose testimony quotations appear
in these pages, was re-appointed to command the police force for the next
two years.

The findings of this committee made but little, if any, impression upon
the public mind. There were no revelations as to the condition of criminal
affairs, and the relations of the police therewith, which were new to the
people, with the possible exception, perhaps, that it was not known how
utterly inefficient and irresponsible the Chief of Police was. From that
moment every newspaper has, if not demanded, at least suggested his
removal from office. In this respect it but voices the sentiments of the
entire community. It is a paradox why, in the face of this public feeling,
a majority of the people supported for re-election the staunch friend of
the dishonored head of the police force, unless upon the hypothesis that
he would not continue to be a part of the new administration. If so, the
hypothesis soon failed. The Mayor thought he would "hold him for a while."

The lesson to be learned from the failure of this committee's report to
attract public attention to the prevalence of criminality and obscenity in
Chicago as fostered by the police force is this, that an investigation
concerning the methods of government of a city administration controlled
by the Democratic party, without a kindred investigation of the methods of
a county administration controlled by the Republican party is too
partisan to suit the sense of fair play and of justice entertained by
every American citizen. It matters not that the order for the
investigation had reference only to the passage of legislation for the
regulation of the police force in cities of a certain population, and
that, therefore, the scope of the inquiry was limited by the terms of the
order. Perhaps it was as broad as it could have been made, under the
governor's call, which, by the provisions of the constitution fixed the
subjects upon which only legislation could be enacted in special session.
Either the call should have been broader, or this particular subject
matter should have been omitted from it, and left for the regular
session's consideration. Then all matters pertaining to the manner of
conducting both city and county affairs could have been investigated free
from the delimitations of an executive call. Nevertheless, the fact
remains that the report of the Berry Committee, as it was called, is a
stinging indictment against the police force of Chicago, which sooner or
later must be tried at the bar of public opinion. It will, in a measure,
have blazed the way for a new committee of inquiry, whose sittings have
just commenced, in so far as the police department is concerned.

The Baxter Committee was formed under a resolution of the Senate. It
consists of five republican and two democratic senators. The resolution
refers "to the management and control of the police affairs" of Chicago,
and "the conduct of the municipal government thereof, in reference to the
expenditure of public money and the enforcement of the law in its several
departments." This language would limit the scope of the committee's
inquiry to city affairs only. The resolution, however, closes with words
granting authority to the committee for a "full, complete and perfect
investigation of any and all the said subject matters herein named, and
such other subjects as they may deem wise and prudent to investigate in
the interests of good government."

If this committee is wise it will not confine its efforts to ascertaining
how the city government is managed. It will command public approval if it
will extend its inquiries into the affairs of the county government as
well. This the community will demand; with less it will not be satisfied.
The great mass of both parties is concerned with what will be of the most
advantage to good government, not with what will be to the greatest
advantage of either party. Hence, if this inquiry has in view a partisan
purpose its sessions will merely reproduce tales of the street familiar to
the ears of the people, and with which the legislature has been familiar
for a decade. To associate these crimes and debaucheries with one
administration will in one respect be unfair, because they have progressed
under other administrations as well, but it can emphasize the one great
and astonishing truth, that never in the history of the city has a police
force been permitted to become the bed-fellow of these monstrous evils, to
protect them and contribute to their overwhelming power, in such a
shameless, openhanded and defiant manner as it has in the past two years,
as it is still permitted to do, and as it will probably be permitted to
do, for the next two years.

That committee will find nothing in these pages unknown to the observing
citizen. The great mass of the people read and forget. These evils are
hinted at herein, and gathered together. They may impress those who are
unaccustomed to taking notes of passing events. That the growth of crime
in Chicago, and the prevalence of bestiality is not generally believed by
the majority of its people is a self-evident proposition. It would be an
insult to their intelligence and virtue to assert they knew the facts. It
is not a criticism of their intelligence to say they do not know the
facts. It is rather to their credit that in the pursuit of their business,
the care of their homes, and the cultivation of their morals, they judge
the great community in which they live by their own standard, and firmly
believe that as they know themselves to be good citizens, they believe
their fellow men are likewise good citizens. While they rest in this
conviction vice is eternally at work, immorality undermining and crime
attacking the power of government, capturing one and then the other of its
strongholds, until today the criminal classes constitute the balance of
power in every city election, and can handle it as they may choose, by
the mere concentration of the voting strength of the keepers of eight
thousand saloons and their hangers on.

The appointment of a comptroller and corporation counsel acceptable to the
public, both being men of sterling integrity, and known ability, is merely
a partial promise of reform. The new comptroller is a worthy successor to
the deceased Waller, while the new corporation counsel takes his office,
with a reputation for probity and legal acumen which are guaranties that
neither will be used in an attack upon the people's laws. But the police
department and the public works department are still under the same
direction. They give no promise of departing from the protection of
criminals on the one hand, nor the illegal letting of contracts on the
other. Both of these are inviting fields for the Baxter committee to
explore, and when they shall have thoroughly done so, if they shall turn
their attention to county affairs, they will probably find pastures just
as prolific of the rankest of weeds.

The Baxter committee began its hearings on the 18th day of May, 1899. Its
opening witness confirmed the truth of many of the facts set forth in
these pages. He paid protection money for keeping a gambling house, until
the demands for a contribution to a campaign fund became too exacting,
when he was "told he had better quit." "As an ounce of prevention is worth
a pound of cure," said the witness: "I quit."

He testified that gambling was going on everywhere a few days before the
committee began its work, named a number of the resorts, and related some
of his losses in a few of the games in which, although a professional
gambler, he was "skinned."

Officers were found in them, and protection to the games openly boasted
of. The club organization, it develops, is the gambling idea of evading
the laws, the theory being that none can gamble unless they are members.
The practice seems, however, to be that every man is a member who will not
squeal. Houses of disrepute were visited, and the indecencies alluded to
in foregoing pages witnessed by the sergeant-at-arms of the committee.
His testimony in this respect was too realistic for publication.

A member of a recent grand jury submitted a list of all night saloons he
had visited, and found doing business, between the hours of one and five
o'clock in the morning. The list contained the names of forty-six saloons,
located on eleven different streets. His information was not as startling
as was the fact that his joint feat of pedestrianism and absorption of
drink is, perhaps, unequalled in sporting or drinking records. He drank in
each of the places visited--total drinks, forty-six in four hours. Length
of route covered four miles; width, about one-half mile; square miles
traversed--two! Can any sprinter, carrying the same weights, surpass this

The witnesses so far called before the committee are mostly from the
detective force, and from among lodging house keepers. Their replies are
evasive, and when not so, their memories are clouded. All they had ever
known of the subjects upon which they are interrogated had fled from their
recollection. "I don't remember," avoided many a pitfall.

The methods of the committee do not impress an observer as having been the
result of much consultation or careful preparation for their work. There
is an apparent indifference on the part of some of its members to reaching
results, or to remaining steadily in the pursuit of the purposes for which
it was organized. Political influences are undoubtedly at work to shorten
the lines of its inquiry, and the length of the days it shall devote to
their development. This investigation is not wanted by local politicians
of either party. It rests with the committee alone to determine whether
its work shall be well done or not. To maintain the dignity of the State
is their first duty, let their investigation reveal what it may and strike
whom it will.

A people who voluntarily submit to taxation for the construction of such a
stupendous improvement as the drainage canal costing $28,000,000, who
apply their surplus water fund to the building of a complete system of
intercepting sewers, who compel the abolition of the murderous grade
crossings, through the elevation of railway tracks, all for the
improvement of the sanitary condition and safety of their homes and lives,
are entitled to the best protection the state can give them against the
domination of criminals and debauchees, even if the management of its
police force should thereby be placed in the hands of state agencies, or
under some other supervision which will compel it to dissolve its
relations with vice, and prevent it from utilization for political ends.

Submission to the exactions of trusts, in the shape of telephone and gas
companies, does not require them to submit to a trust of criminals and
police officials. The element to which it is estimated $70,000,000 is
annually paid in Chicago for its drink bill, must be so regulated, as that
it shall cease to furnish the balance of power in elections, to exercise a
baneful influence over the police, to ruin the young, to encourage
debauchery, and breed criminals. A municipal government that cannot, or
will not, control these vicious agencies, will ultimately be condemned by
a public-spirited people, if they can be, as they sooner or later will
be, persuaded to devote a few hours, taken from their business or
pleasure, to a vigorous uprooting of a system under which such iniquities
can be born and develop to such menacing proportions. There must be an
awakening to the fact that

  "They say this town is full of cozenage,
   As, nimble jugglers that deceive the eye,
   Dark-working sorcerers that change the mind,
   Soul-killing witches that deform the body,
   Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks,
   And many such like liberties of sin."


From the daily press a few accounts are culled, and added by way of
appendix, as to the perpetration of crime and the habits of the police in
connection with it.

The Baxter Committee unearthed the following account of the degree of
protection afforded to citizens by police officers, and the easy-going
indifference with which the Chief of Police regarded the affair when it
was first called to his attention.

On the night of March 3d ult. a woman returning from a drug store was
stopped by two detectives and charged with soliciting men upon the
streets. She denied this offensive charge, told where she had been and
where returning, and showed a bottle of medicine she carried as
confirmatory of her statements. This happened about 8:45 o'clock. She was
then within twenty feet of the entrance to the house in which she lived.
Notwithstanding her denial, the officers went to the house with her. One
of them then said, "I'm an officer; open this door!" Another woman with
whom the arrested woman was boarding asked, "What is the matter?" One of
the officers replied, "This woman was on the street soliciting," to which
the boarding house keeper replied, "You are mistaken." "Well," said the
officer, "if you want to stop her give me $15," and the reply was, "She
has no money to give you or to any one." The boarding house keeper,
thinking the men were common thieves, then whispered to the accused woman,
"Go with them and I will follow you." The officers took their woman to a
corner and into a saloon, where they compelled her to give up a pair of
diamond earrings for ten dollars which were handed to her by the
bartender. The boarding house woman followed, and prevented the detectives
from obtaining the ten dollars, but finally they grabbed the bill from the
accused woman's hands. The women were then released and returned to their
home. Taking a sealskin sack with them they returned to the saloon, and
were handed the diamond earrings, but not without leaving the sack in
their stead. The women saw the detectives return, and drink at the bar,
paying for their tipple with the money they had snatched from the hand of
the one.

While the parties were wrangling on the street a police sergeant and two
officers in uniform passed. One of the women cried out, "Here are two men
robbing this woman!" The sergeant replied, after observation, "I have got
nothing to do with this." One of the women asked, "What are you for?" Then
the sergeant, having discovered the men were detectives, said to one of
them, "They are all right. Get what you can." The sergeant then left.

The women now demanded that the detectives show their badges of authority.
They were shown. Demand was then made that a patrol wagon should be
called. This was denied, but accidentally one came along the street
returning to its station. When the accused woman caught sight of it she
fainted. The boarding house keeper raised such commotion that one of the
detectives said, "For God's sake, shut that woman's mouth up or she will
make us trouble!" They then ran away.

The next day the boarding house woman called on the Chief of Police and
told the whole story. He referred her to the Lieutenant at the station of
the precinct in which the indignity occurred. To him the entire facts were
given, and written down by the desk sergeant. The men were there

On the following day one of the detectives went to the women's house,
accompanied by a brother-in-law, whose wife was a personal friend of the
boarding house woman. The detective had a copy of the woman's statement as
she had made it at the police station. He begged for mercy, crying, "he
had nothing to say for himself." He piteously pleaded he had a mother in
the hospital, a mother-in-law who was dying, and three small children to
support. Suggestions were made, and the woman's feelings worked upon so
that she was induced to leave the city.

Meanwhile the boarding house keeper made a statement at another police
station, in which she suppressed the facts as to the diamonds and the
money. She was asked to appear before the police trial board, and
refused. Thereupon the charges against the detectives were dismissed.

It developed before the Baxter Committee that the Chief of Police had been
told all the facts. The papers got hold of an account of the affair, and
the Chief called upon the boarding house keeper. In the course of his
conversation, this woman trying to protect the officers through her
aroused sympathy, was asked by the Chief, "What about those diamond
earrings and sealskin sack?" The woman answered, "If you don't know, I
don't." He then asked, "Didn't you tell that to me?" She answered, "If you
can't remember, I can't." She was then questioned by the Chief whether
these officers were begging her to quash the matter, whether they were
offering her money for that purpose, etc.

The Chief stated the reporters were hounding him to death, when the woman
asked him "why he did not show her statement?" He replied it was locked
up, "if they want any information they can get it from you."

One of the men is still a member of the detective force. The other
resigned and went into the saloon business, and appeared before the
committee entering a partial denial of the woman's story. The knowledge of
the Chief of all the facts was fully shown before the committee.
Notwithstanding this, he does not appear to have taken any steps to keep
the matter before the trial board, or to institute any other proceedings
to bring these detectives to punishment.

This is not at all surprising in the face of the fact that this officer
is, as is shown in court proceedings, a veritable czar in his own

The following account is taken from the _Chicago Democrat_ of May 27th
ult. A similar report of the case is contained in the other dailies.

"Judge Brentano held, this morning, that Chief of Police K. did not have
the power to have a man restrained of his liberty at his (K.'s) request.
The decision was brought about on the hearing of a petition for a writ of
habeas corpus filed by Attorney F. A. D. for the release of Edward H., who
was arrested last Monday morning at Twenty-ninth and State streets on
account of the shooting of Officer James S., which resulted from an
attempt of a number of officers to enforce the
disarmament-of-colored-people policy of the Chief of Police.

"The man had been confined in the county jail, and the return of the
sheriff, when the prisoner was brought into court, read: 'Edward H. has
been detained in my custody at the request of J. K., Chief of Police for
the city of Chicago.' Judge Brentano evinced great displeasure when he
read the return of the illegal detainment of the prisoner. 'A man,' said
the court, 'cannot be held at the simple request of K. or any other
person. K.'s word is not sufficient to keep any man in custody. I won't
tolerate any such actions, for if the man was guilty of shooting an
officer, or committing any other crime, Mr. K. has had sufficient time and
knows how to take the proper steps to punish the prisoner.'

"'The court certainly would not allow this man his liberty when he is
under arrest and has not been booked or complained against before a
justice of the peace owing to the neglect perhaps of such a high official
as Mr. K.,' remarked the assistant city prosecuting attorney.

"'I certainly would, regardless of whose neglect it is,' said the court.
'The prisoner is discharged.'

"No witnesses were heard, the prisoner being discharged on the ground that
it was shown in the return of the sheriff that H. was simply being
detained to please Chief K.

"Attorney D. had witnesses in court to show that the prisoner had been
beaten and injured by the police who arrested him, both before his arrival
at the Twenty-second street station and after he was installed in a cell
at that place.

"Prisoners who were in the station at the time H. was taken there were in
court to testify that the officers who had charge of the prisoner beat and
struck him in such a manner that they thought H. would be killed.

"The prisoner's face and condition in court were the best evidences of the
treatment he had received.

"Both of his eyes are closed, swollen and discolored to such a degree that
they stand out in bold contrast to his own color, which is a dark copper.
Two gashes, each six inches long, on the top and front of his head bear
testimony to the means said to have been used by the officers in carrying
out their chief's new disarmament policy.

"It is also alleged that the prisoner was confined in a dungeon cell while
he was in the custody of the Twenty-second street police.

"After his discharge the injured man had to be helped to the elevator by
two of his friends because of his injuries. The names of the officers who
assaulted the prisoner were not obtainable, for the reason that the
prisoner had not been booked and the officer making the arrest had not
signed any complaint."

Two observations will arrest the attention of the average reader. They
must naturally occur to his mind. First, What sort of a Sheriff is he who
will keep a man in jail, without a proper commitment? Second, What kind of
a lawyer must he be who will suggest to a court the propriety of depriving
a man of his liberty, without due process of law, at the mere request of
such "a high official" as the Chief of Police?

The return of the Sheriff in this case to the writ of _habeas corpus_
should have been treated as a contempt of court.

Pool rooms are operating as of yore. The _Daily News_ of May 27 ult.
contains the following, viz.:

"The saloon of J. H. D. at E. and N. C. streets was converted into a pool
room yesterday afternoon at the time the ticker began to record the
winning horses in the races at the various tracks throughout the country.
A dozen men assembled in the barroom where the ticker was located and
placed bets, while a number of women sat in the back rooms and also
chanced their money.

"The women's wants were looked after by a young man who answered to the
name of 'Dude.' After each race he carried them the slip printed from the
ticker showing the winners and handed their money to those who had been
lucky. During the interval between the races the schedule of the next race
was discussed by all who intended to place money, and 'Dude' would come
from the rear room with a handful of bills to place on some race by the

"On the inside money was passed over the bar indiscriminately and a clerk
was busy keeping track of those who placed bets. From the conversation
which passed between those in the barroom one might judge that he was in a
genuine poolroom, where the interference of police was not to be feared.

"All the men present merely gave their initials when they risked their
money, and these were carefully preserved on paper until the ticker
decided whether the money was lost or won. The man who passed as 'Dude'
had charge of the pools apparently, and all the money which was placed
went through his hands. After taking it he would call the initials of the
man placing the bet and then hand the money to the man behind the bar."

The ticker was presided over by a large, smooth-faced, well-dressed man
and anything which came over the machine which was not a report on a horse
race was of no interest. The reports of the score at the various ball
games were soon shown the waste basket, while the lists of the horses
which earned places were preserved and hung on hooks after they had been
carefully inspected by those present.

A number of stylishly dressed women were seen to enter the place, and,
according to information furnished the _Daily News_, women have been in
the habit of visiting the D. saloon for some time for the purpose of
placing bets on the races. Two young women came from the direction of L.
S. avenue about 4 o'clock and entered the place apparently as though it
was nothing new to them.

"The 'ladies' entrance' is on the E. street side. The rooms for women are
arranged in the east half of the double-flat building on E. street, while
the saloon faces on C. street.

"J. H. D., who conducts the place, came in yesterday afternoon while the
betting was at its height, and, bedecked in diamonds, walked leisurely
behind the bar and, picking up a Racing Form, turned to the 'boys' and
asked how 'things were going.' He was told the winners in the races which
had been reported during his absence and seemed pleased with what was told

"The saloon is known as 'D.'s O. P. C.,' and has been conducted at this
place for the past five or six years. The license for the place is in the
name of Mrs. J. H. D. It is said that D. was formerly in the saloon
business here, but sold out and went to New York, where he put on a
vaudeville show and sunk several thousand dollars trying to make it pay.
He finally failed, it is said, and came back to Chicago and reopened his

"At the Chicago avenue police station nothing was known apparently of the
gambling at the D. saloon on the races. Capt. R. said that he told a
couple of his men some time ago to watch the place, but he said they had
reported nothing irregular. The captain seemed surprised when he heard of
how affairs were, and Inspector H. was apparently very indignant at the
thought that anything of the sort was going on in his district. He at once
gave the captain orders to send a couple of men to the place and if
anything was found to be going on there to stop it."

The result of the visit of the Inspector's officers is thus stated in the
_Tribune_ of May 28th ult. Its headline is suggestive, in view of the
particulars given in the _Daily News_ of the occurrences by its reporter.


"A report that a poolroom was being conducted in the saloon of J. H. D.,
E. and N. C. Streets, was investigated yesterday by Detectives B. and R.,
who visited the place at 3 p. m., and reported no gambling existed there.
It was said that during Friday afternoon bets on the races were accepted
in the saloon and that men as well as women frequented the place."

The newspapers contribute evidences of the absence of crime in Chicago,
and of police operations as follows, viz.:

From the _Daily News_ May 27th ult.

"Officers from the Attrill street police station are scouring the west
side in an effort to apprehend burglars who created havoc in the vicinity
of Humboldt Park boulevard and Western avenue during the early morning
hours of yesterday. Among the residences visited by the night prowlers
were those of: (Here follows a list of eleven burglaries.)

"In addition burglaries at the following places in the immediate
neighborhood have been committed within the last few days: (Here follows
a list of four burglaries.)

"One of the burglars rode from house to house on a bicycle. Two revolvers
dropped by the visitors were found in the yard of the E. residence. The
territory suffering the nightly raids is embraced in the suburb of
Maplewood, and citizens have armed themselves in their own defense,
asserting that police uniforms have not been seen on the streets concerned
for weeks."

From the _Democrat_ May 27th ult.:

"Burglars forced an entrance into the store of the Guarantee Clothing
Company, State street, last night and stole nearly $1,000 worth of goods.

"Apparently the thieves took their time, and the police say they must have
used a wagon in removing the goods. Persons living in the flats above
heard nothing unusual during the night, and the police are unable to
comprehend how the thieves could remove the great amount of property
without attracting attention.

"This morning a clerk opened the front door of the store. It looked as
though a small cyclone had passed through the establishment."

This burglary took place between two police stations, from neither of
which it was far distant. It is probable that if one officer had gone over
his beat just once that night, its perpetrators would have been caught in
the act. Some neighboring saloon was, perhaps, more needful of police

Some tremendous effort is being made, however, to suppress policy shops
and clean out all night saloons! Witness the following, viz.:

From papers of May 27th ult.:

"Detectives D. and D. of Chief K.'s office raided a policy shop in the
basement of the building at 6 Washington street last night and destroyed
the fixtures of the place and confiscated the sheets, records and other

"The shop was in a small room under the sidewalk and was reached through a
barber shop. S. H., the police say, was the agent in charge of the place,
and represented the O. R. & G. company of Fort Erie, Canada. No arrests
were made, but Chief K. says the place will remain closed."

"Two hours after midnight Sergt. M. and Officers M., O'B., H. and F.,
from the Harrison street police station, raided the C. L. saloon at State
street, arresting sixty inmates. The majority of these were boys. There
was one man with gray hair and wrinkled face.

"Shortly before the police court convened at 9 o'clock the entire crowd
was marched into Inspector H.'s office and from there to the courtroom,
where the cases were disposed of by Justice M. Every sort of a plea
generally used in court was brought into play by the defendants. Some
cases were dismissed, while other prisoners were fined $25 and $50. The
police claim about half of those arrested were criminals.

"The arrests were made because of the large number of complaints against
the saloon."

The raid on the policy shop belongs to the spasmodic line of operations of
the police. Fifty of them could be made if some mysterious reason did not
exist why they are not made.

The saloon referred to belongs to the all night class, and is one of the
most notorious of the kind. It has been protected in the past, and still
would be if it were not for the fact that "a large number of complaints"
have been made against it. These are not new to the police. They have been
made before, but something must be done for appearance sake while the
Baxter Committee continues its probing! That this place was a resort for
criminals is not a recent discovery by the police. They always knew it.

To cull the press for proofs of the truth of the charges made in the
foregoing pages, would result, in a few days, in the reproduction of a
mass of evidence on the total inefficiency of the police force. Such as
are here given are examples of the many the scissors could find.

The reader can multiply them, in his mind, ten fold in a week's time, and
then reach a result far short of the facts.

The whole story of the alliance between the police, the saloons and the
justices is told in the following cartoon taken from the Daily News of
June 23, 1899.


THE DIVEKEEPER (to Harrison street police officer)--"I've got my dollar a
head out of them. Now you can drive them into court and give the justice
his chance."

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