Source: Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “Tragedy As It Was Seen by Debutante Singer”
City of publication: New York, New York
Date of publication: 9 September 1901
Volume number: 61
Issue number: 250
|“Tragedy As It Was Seen by Debutante Singer.” Brooklyn Daily Eagle 9 Sept. 1901 v61n250: p. 2.|
|Bessie Greenwood; McKinley assassination (eyewitness accounts: Bessie Greenwood); McKinley assassination (eyewitnesses); Bessie Greenwood (public statements); McKinley assassination (eyewitness accounts: La Frone Merriman); La Frone Merriman (public statements).|
|Leon Czolgosz; Bessie Greenwood; William McKinley; La Frone Merriman.|
Tragedy As It Was Seen by Debutante Singer
Miss Greenwood Waiting to Begin in Temple of Music When Shooting Began.
(Special to the Eagle.)
Hornellsville, N. Y., August [sic] 9—The
elusiveness of fate is typified in the experience of Miss Bessie Greenwood,
a young singer of this city, who was to have made her first public appearance
of note last Friday in the Temple of Music at the Pan-American Exposition and
who was just preparing to sing, when Leon Czolgosz shot the President. The chance
that she had looked forward to for so long slipped from her just as she was
about to take it.
In speaking of the scene at the shooting, Miss Greenwood says:
“I was only six feet away from the President, and was just about to sing as the people came up to shake hands with Mr. McKinley.
“The organ had just played my prelude when I saw a man with a handkerchief over his hand crowd up to the President, where he was standing at the lower step leading to the approach of the organ. This man seemed to crouch down a little and then I saw the smoke and heard the reports of the revolver. The President did not fall back, as has been stated, but sat down in a chair that was near him.”
La Frone Merriman, also of this city, under whom Miss Greenwood studied and who was to conduct the music when she was to sing in the Temple of Music, said:
“The reports of the revolver came together and quicker than you can clasp your hands, much quicker than I ever before heard the reports of a gun or revolver.”
The people who were to shake hands with the President came in one door, passed by the organ and went out another door, so that there would be no stationary crowd.
“After the report of the revolver, I shall never forget the sight as long as I live. The President deathly white, sitting in a chair and the dense crowd, which seemed to surge in from all over, became uncontrollable for a time and seemed to have lost their heads.”