Source: Cleveland Plain Dealer
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “Heard News with Tears and Cries”
City of publication: Cleveland, Ohio
Date of publication: 15 September 1901
Volume number: 60
Issue number: 258
|“Heard News with Tears and Cries.” Cleveland Plain Dealer 15 Sept. 1901 v60n258: part 1, p. 5.|
|Czolgosz family (informed about McKinley death); Paul Czolgosz (informed about McKinley death); Katherine Metzfaltr Czolgosz; Paul Czolgosz (public statements); John Czolgosz (public statements).|
|John Czolgosz; Leon Czolgosz [variant spelling below]; Paul Czolgosz [first name wrong once below; variant spelling twice below]; William McKinley.|
Heard News with Tears and Cries
Czolgasz’s Parents Frantic When Told of President’s Death.
“Why Did He Do It?” Muttered Agonized Father.
The parents of Leon Czolgasz, the assassin of
President McKinley, received the news of the death of the nation’s chief executive
at their home in Newburg early yesterday morning. The father, John Czolgasz,
and his wife both broke down as a Plain Dealer reporter delivered the sad message.
“My God! can it be true? My boy has killed him!” exclaimed the frantic father. He paced the floor like an insane man, ran his hands through his hair and muttered one thing after another.
“Why did he do it? Why did he do it?” he kept saying over and over again, wringing his hands and continuing to pace up and down the floor of the narrow living room. Czolgasz felt too badly to talk on the matter at all. His wife threw herself upon a couch in the corner and wept bitterly.
The reporter returned in the afternoon and found a son, John, brother to the assassin, at the home, No. 306 Fleet street.
“My father and mother have suffered untold pain since the president has died,” he remarked. The mother was seated upon the door step pealing potatoes for the evening meal. She could not speak English and the son related to the newspaper man the effect it had upon the parents.
“We all feel terribly over it,” he continued, “but it can’t be helped. We are sorry that it has happened. It has cast a bad reflection upon the Polish people of this country.”
“You claim to be Polish people, do you?” asked the reporter.
“Oh, yes,” he replied, “we are of Polish descent, although some people are endeavoring to make out that we are Russians.”
“Have you heard from your brother, Leon?”
“No. We have written him, but he has not replied.”
Just then a letter carrier appeared at the door with a letter for the grief stricken mother.
“A letter from Leon, I’ll bet,” exclaimed John as the two nervously broke the seal.
But it wasn’t. It was an unsigned letter from Milwaukee. It extended sympathy to the mother and said that the poor boy couldn’t help committing the deed. A clipping from a Milwaukee newspaper containing an account of the terrible shooting and pictures of both the assassin and the president were inclosed.
“Will either of your parents visit your brother at Buffalo?”continued the reporter.
“Probably not,” replied John. “They both feel terribly sad over the affair, but they believe that they can be of no service to him. He has committed the crime with no provocation and he must suffer. If they should go it would only make them feel all the worse and they won’t go.”
The father, Paul Czolgosz, continued his work on the streets yesterday.