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Summary of the May 1st 1891 NY Times article
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The article was titled: "IS HE THE GUILTY MAN? / FACTS WHICH SEEM TO POINT TO THE MURDERER OF CARRIE BROWN"
It was published May 1, 1891, in the New York Times.
It details the arrest of "George Frank", otherwise known as "Francois" and referred to by the police as "Frenchy No. 1". He was an Algerian sailor who usually worked fruit boats. He appears to have had a reputation for robbing and "maltreating" the women at the East River Hotel, which appears to have been a casual rooming house for prostitutes and their clients. Men weren't allowed to sleep alone in rooms, and women were not allowed to go out at night, according to information about the "rules" of the "establishment".
The facts of the case: Carrie Brown was accompanied by George Frank on both Wednesday and Thursday evenings. On Friday, April 23, 1891 she went upstairs with a companion to Room 33. Two hours later, George Frank distracted the youth at the door by paying his twenty-five cents all in pennies, and took Room 31. The boy, Edward Fitzgerald, reported Frank's action to the bartender, Samuel Shine, who muttered contempteously about "Frenchy", but eventually decided to let him stay in the room alone. Early Friday morning, Frank departed, "turning his face to the wall" as he passed Fitzgerald, and "sneaking out the private entrance".
The evidence of the case: They found "specks and clots of blood" on the floor of the hall between the two rooms, as well as blood on the "outside and inside of the door" to 33. Room 33 also had blood "on a chair, the bedstead, and the army blankets which covered it." The police chiseled up the wood containing blood from the floor and door, for analysis. They had not identified the man who had accompanied Brown on Friday, nor did they know the owner of the knife found in Room 33. Analysis by Dr. Cyrus Edson and others indicated the blood from the hallway was human, and it was likely the rest would be similar.
Evidence on George Frank's person: he had blood on his underclothing, as well as under his fingernails, this blood also being tested. His statements about where he had been prior to the arrest were all found to be untrue. He had a history as a professional beggar, and police found a complete set of splints for simulating "a broken arm" in places where Frank had been. Frank had completed a thirty-days sentence in Queens County Jail on April 13, 1891 for "vagrancy." Frank stated at his arraignment that he had not murdered the Brown woman.
Other details: policemen mentioned were Inspector Brynes and Capt. McLaughlin; officials mentioned were District Attorney Nicoll and Deputy Assistant District Attorney Lindsay, Judge Martine issued the warrant against the prisoner; the inquest was rescheduled until May, and both Nicoll and Lindsay would attend it in person; the victim's body was "delivered to her relatives, and sent to Salem for burial."
I wondered about the arrested man being referred throughout the article as "Frenchy No. 1" or as "the prisoner", and rarely by his name. Was it a bit of racism, if the sailor wasn't white? Not enough information to go on, really.
"Frenchy No. 2" had been arrested, but was "satisfactorily proven to be innocent, and was released." He had been at his work, four miles away, when Carrie Brown was going upstairs with her companion.
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