Publication information
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Source: New York Times
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “Brisbane to Ministers on Candidate Hearst”
Author(s): anonymous
City of publication: New York, New York
Date of publication: 31 October 1905
Volume number: 55
Issue number: 17447
Pagination: 4

“Brisbane to Ministers on Candidate Hearst.” New York Times 31 Oct. 1905 v55n17447: p. 4.
Hearst newspapers (role in the assassination); cartoons; Arthur Brisbane (public statements); William McKinley; Theodore Roosevelt; William Randolph Hearst; McKinley assassination (public response: criticism); Leon Czolgosz (incarceration: Buffalo, NY: visitations).
Named persons
Arthur Brisbane; Leon Czolgosz; William Randolph Hearst; Ida McKinley; William McKinley; Frederick Burr Opper; Theodore Roosevelt; Samuel H. Thompson.
“Arthur Brisbane, chief editorial writer for William R. Hearst’s newspapers, addressed the monthly meeting of the Presbyterian Ministers’ Association of New York and vicinity, at 156 Fifth Avenue, yesterday afternoon” (p. 4).


Brisbane to Ministers on Candidate Hearst [excerpt]

     [ . . . ] then Dr. S. H. Thompson of Red Bank, N. J., wanted to know about the charge that the Hearst cartoons were responsible for President McKinley’s assassination.
     “There has been a wide misstatement of facts here,” said Mr. Brisbane. “It is true that the Hearst newspapers did print a series of cartoons at the expense of Mr. McKinley, entitled, ‘Willie and His Pa,’ and depicting the late Presiden[t] at the beck and call of the trusts. Now, these were ordinary, humorous sketches, and the fact [i]s that no one seemed to enjoy them more than Mr. McKinley himself. In truth, he collected them and kept them to the day of his death, as Mrs. McKinley can testify. Just before Mr. McKinley met his death Mr. Opper, the artist, received a letter from Mr. Roosevelt, then Vice President, who commended him for his funny work. Mr. Roosevelt thought the ‘Willie’ cartoon[s] very funny, and asked for a set of them. We did not print this letter at the time we were charged with assassination, owing to the delicacy of Mr. Roosevelt’s position.
     “It was during this series of cartoons that Mr. Hearst called upon the President for the purpose of organizing a regiment to fight in the Spanish war. Mr. McKinley was very pleasant and friendly to Mr. Hearst, and thanked him for his offer, declining it on the ground that an acceptance would disorganize army plans. Mr. Hearst then offered, without cost, a yacht, to be placed at the disposal of the Government for war service. [Other] rich men, you will recall, received money for similar gifts. Mr. McKinley was very gracious to Mr. Hearst when this offer was made, and thanked him again. Mr. McKinley and Mr. Hearst at that time were on friendly terms personally.
     “When the assassination occurred, certain persons looked about for a mark upon which to stamp their condemnation; they wanted to find a provocation for the work of Czolgosz, and the thing that fixed their attention was the Hearst cartoons. They grasped the opportunity to flaunt them before the enraged country because they couldn’t very well find anything else off-hand. Then some of our enemies went to the Buffalo prison and showed Czolgosz the cartoons. He was asked if he had ever seen and read them. He replied that he had not.”



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