Leon Czolgosz’s Brother
Gave an Alpena Evening News Reporter a Talk Yesterday.
CAN’T BELIEVE LEON IS THE MAN.
Admitted That He Had Associated with Soc[i]alists.—A Wonderful
Confusion Over a Similarity of Names.
The similarity of names, the evidence
that is at hand whic[h] makes it apparent that there are two Leon
Czolgoz’s [sic], has lead [sic] to all kinds of confusion. If there
were no contradicting circumstances to the statement printed in
The News yesterday, taken from the Chicago Daily News, that story
would be accepted as correct, as indeed it will be if it is established
beyond a doubt that the would be [sic] assassin of President McKinley
was [b]orn in Detroit 29 years ago, as he say [sic] he was.
There are however so many circumstances
connected with the case, vouched for by peop[l]e who speak with
a full and familiar knowledge of the subject, that one is forced
to accept the story that the would-be assassin once lived in Alpena,
and that the story printed in The News extra edition Saturday night
was correct so far as it went.
In the statement made b[y] Czolgosz
Saturday night, which was printed in this paper yesterday, the prisoner
says he was born in Detroit 29 years ago. That he was believer [sic]
in anarchism; that he was stopping in Buffalo with a man known a[s]
Nowak. It will also be recalled that when arrested he gave the name
of Frederick Neiman. If this is true, it is a most remarkable coincident
[sic]. When Paul Cozlosz left here with his family nine years ago,
he drifted around for a short time, and then located in Cleveland.
Here Leon grew up, and became a very active member of a socialist
organization. According to his step mother’s [sic] statement, made
last Saturday, Leo[n] had become a rolling stone, and they knew
nothing of his whereabouts except that he was in Indiana a short
time ago. The name of the man with whom the would-be assassin stopped
in Buffalo, was Nowack, which was the name of Alpena’s Leon Czolgosz’
[sic] mother before she was married. The name the would-be assassin
gave to the police when first arrested was Frederick Neiman, which
is the German pronounciation [sic] of Nowak, which the mother frequently
adopted. It is said that young Leon sometimes went by the name of
Fred, but it is hardly proba[b]le that any one [sic] can be found
that wi[l]l vouch for this.
Accepting the theory that the man
who was born in Alpena, is the assassin, The News started to secur[e]
an interview with a relative of the man, and herewith presents the
first story that has been given to the public by a blood relation.
The story is not so comp[l]ete as one woul[d] expect to secure from
[a] person about so close a relative as a brother, but when it is
taken into consideration that the family are of non-communicative
disposition, speak English with difficulty, both ignorant and superstituous
[sic], it is not surprising that they would be reticent on a matter
of such grave importance to them.
A News representative left here yesterday
morning for Posen to secure an interview with the assassin’s eldest
bother [sic], Frank. From Posen a [d]rive of sixteen miles through
an unsettled and uncivilized country over almost impassable corduroy
roads brought our representative to the home of the brother. The
home is similar to many to be found in that locality—a small, log
cabin affair, containing but two rooms, but the man is of a thifty
[sic] nature, and with his young wife lives in comparative happiness.
Although the first information he
receved [sic] concerning the crime of whch [sic] his brother is
accused, was given to him by our representative, he received it
with very little concern.
“There must be some mistake,” he said.
“I will not believe that he tried to kill the good Mr. McKinley.”
When questioned as to the earl[y]
life of his younger brother, Frank could not give any very definte
[sic] information concerning either him or other mem[b]ers of the
family. He said:
“Leon s [sic] my next youngest brother,
but as to his place of birth I am not sure. I always supposed he
was born as I was myself in Kakrow [sic] township, this county,
about 1876. I am 29 years of age and he is about 3 or 4 years younger.
“Leon was never very industrious.
After my father, the old man Paul, moved to Cleveland, I used to
go once every year to visit him, and I remember that on my last
visit I heard Leon say [h]e belonged to a society of socialists
and he used to laugh at me for working, so har[d], saying that it
was not necessary and no man should have to work so hard. It is
three years since I have visited the old man an[d] since that time
I have heard from my family but once—a letter last fall from my
oldest brother, and a letter last March from my brother Mike who
is in the Phippines [sic]. In the letter from my oldest brother
he told me that Leon had enlisted in the Spanish war, was wounded
and was drawing a penson [sic] of $20 per month. That is all I know
As to the report that Leon had been
in Alpena two years ago, Frank [s]aid he did not believe it as the
last time he had seen him was in Cle veland [sic] on the occasion
of his last visit to the old man’s. Frank answered freely any questions
asked him concerning his brother, but he has become so widely separated
from his family that his knowle[d]ge o[f] them is very limited.
He however absolutely refused to believe that it was his brother
who shot the president.
“Leon might be a better boy than he
is, but he would not shoot the good Mr. McKinley,” he said.
In regard to Frank’s statement that
Leon served in the Spanish war it is very probable that he is mistaken
in the brother. A dispatch from the pension office at Was[h]ington
says: The records of the pension office show that there is one man
by the name of Czolgosz on the rolls. His first name is Jacob F.
and he is drawing a pension of $30 a month [b]ecause of a wound
in the right hand and forearm. The wound was received through the
explosion of a shell at Sandy Hook, in 1899. He was born at Alpena,
Mich., and was twenty-nine years a[n]d ten months old when he was
Frank Czolgosz bears a good reputation
among the residents of his vicinity and they all deeply regret [an]d
resent the act which ha[s] [p]lac[e]d [a] blot u[p]on his family
and upon all their countrymen.