Feb. 28, 1908 (Friday)
FORMER GROCER FRANK MUNSEY CONTINUES TO EXPAND HIS NEWSPAPER CHAIN: A one-paragraph item in today's New York Times mentions that Frank Munsey (above) has bought the 71-year-old Baltimore News, "one of the most progressive evening papers in the South." According to the item this move continues Munsey's efforts toward gaining "a chain of daily newspapers reaching from ocean to ocean." He told listeners yesterday that he hopes to acquire also pulp mills and paper factories that can supply the newspapers under his control. He currently owns The Boston Journal, the Washington Times and seven magazines. Regarding his acquisitions, he said yesterday,
"The stress of competition on the one hand and the White Paper Trust on the other, together with the ever-increasing cost of making a newspaper, will eventually force the publishing business into a combination, as nearly all the other industries have been forced into combination."
[NOTE: Many are skeptical of Munsey's ideas and methods. When Munsey died, William Allen White, longtime editor of the Emporia (Kan.) Gazette wrote what others thought but dared not say. His obituary went this way:
"Frank Munsey, the great publisher, is dead.
"Frank Munsey contributed to the journalism of his day the talent of a meat packer, the morals of a money changer and the manners of an undertaker. He and his kind have about succeeded in transforming a once noble profession into an 8% security.
"May he rest in trust!"
You can find it here.]
INTRIGUE GROWS SURROUNDING THE CARKINS KILLING: The coverage of the case of the killing of George Carkins, mentioned yesterday, has expanded. It's too complicated to explain in detail, but one report from Washington, D.C., printed in today's Boston Globe refers to this as "the remarkable Orendorff-Glacia Calla-Roy-Carkins murder mystery." A new twist appears to involve the "Glacia Calla's [right] alleged aunt, the Baroness von Orendorff." The woman dropped out of Washington society in about 1903 in the wake of some financial, social and political, um, missteps. One of the great lines in the article explains how Washington society could have been fooled:
However, Washington does not examine social credentials very closely when a woman shows an opulent appearance.
Anyway, now some people are saying the shooting was a duel -- inside a house.
COURT PUTS A $2,500 VALUE ON A WOMAN'S "GRECIAN NOSE": In October of 1906, Dr. Bessie Andrus walked toward a trolley car in Chicago, hoping to get on board. As she reached the car, she stepped onto the platform. At that point, the motorman released the brake, and the handle bopped her in the nose -- which she was quite fond of. She suffered a compound fracture and sued for $20,000. On the witness stand, the female physician talked about her nose:
"It was the perfect type. Many persons admired the beauty of my nose and commented upon its graceful and perfect lines. It was what is commonly called a perfect Grecian nose. Since the accident its beauty has been marred and spoiled."
Such beauty was deemed yesterday by a jury in Chicago's Superior Court to be worth $2,500.
NEWSPAPER ASSUMES READER HAS A KNOWLEDGE OF SHAKESPEARE: A young female law student had a great day in court in Newark, N.J., yesterday. The trial involved a man named William Crease who was charged with embezzling $150,000 from Hahne & Co. Crease was supposed to be represented by John Francis Cahill, but Cahill didn't show up in court. When officials tried to assign counsel, no lawyer was available. At that point, Miss Julia F. Hoch -- a law student who has yet to pass the bar -- volunteed to take the case. It was assigned to her.
She won, and, according to today's New York Times, "was congratulated on all sides for the clever way she conducted the case."
The writer said she "played the role of Portia with great success." The headline writer put it this way: "Portia Wins Her Case." No further explanation was thought to be necessary. It might be needed today. The Times refers, of course, to The Merchant of Venice's Portia.