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Source: New-York Tribune
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “The Funeral Begins”
Author(s): anonymous
City of publication: New York, New York
Date of publication: 16 September 1901
Volume number: 61
Issue number: 20028
Pagination: 1

“The Funeral Begins.” New-York Tribune 16 Sept. 1901 v61n20028: p. 1.
full text
William McKinley (lying in state: Buffalo, NY); McKinley funeral train (procession from Buffalo, NY, to Washington, DC); Ida McKinley (grieving); Ida McKinley (medical condition); George B. Cortelyou (public statements).
Named persons
William S. Bull; George B. Cortelyou; William R. Day; Marcus Hanna; Ida McKinley; William McKinley; John G. Milburn; Theodore Roosevelt; Elihu Root.


The Funeral Begins


Buffalo Pays Its Tribute to the Murdered President.

     After brief religious services at the home of John G. Milburn at 11 a. m. yesterday, attended by President Roosevelt, members of the Cabinet and personal friends, the body of President McKinley was taken to the City Hall in Buffalo, where it lay in state until 10:30 p. m. It remained at the City Hall over night. It is estimated that from 75,000 to 100,000 people looked on the face of the dead President.
     At 8:30 o’clock this morning the funeral train will start from Buffalo for Washington, where the state funeral will be held on Tuesday.


     Buffalo, Sept. l5.—Not until 10:30 o’clock to-night, after more than seventy-five thousand persons, by conservative estimate, had passed the bier of the dead President, were there any breaks in the double line of people, walking two abreast, which swiftly passed through the City Hall. By actual count, at certain periods of the afternoon and evening, nine thousand persons passed the coffin every hour. By 10:35 the last straggler had been hurried into the line, and then the police blocked the doorway. The police remained on guard to-night on the outside, and the details from the army and navy on the inside of the City Hall. Immediately after access to the hall was denied to the general public to-night at 10:40, the coffin cover was replaced, and one sailor and two soldiers began the night patrol around the nation’s dead chief. This will be kept up until the coffin is placed on the special train at 8 o’clock to-morrow morning. These details from the army and navy will accompany the body to Washington and Canton.
     The police have made ample preparations for handling the crowds around the Union Station to-morrow morning. Secretary Root sent word to Superintendent Bull that Senator Hanna and Mr. McKinley’s relatives desired all necessary precautions taken so that there should be no blocking of the carriages. Superintendent Bull to-night issued special passes to the newspaper men and others whose business will take them through the lines. The train will leave the Union Station at 8:30. It will consist of six cars—five Pullmans and an observation car. The observation car will be at the end of the train and will carry the President’s body. One car is set aside for the representatives of the newspapers. The route will be by the way of Olean to Williamsport, Harrisburg, Baltimore and Washington, with as few stops as possible.


     Mrs. McKinley’s feelings were put to a severe test to-day by the desire of influential citizens of Buffalo, who deemed it proper respectfully to urge upon Secretary Root, Senator Hanna and Judge Day that the President’s body lie in state until a late hour to-night at the City Hall. She waived her personal wishes when all the circumstances were brought to her notice, although she was greatly depressed on account of the absence of her husband’s body from the Milburn house over night. When 4 o’clock came there were still thousands of people in line, and it was evident that they would continue after the hour set for the closing of the building. Mrs. McKinley was appealed to. Members of the committee on arrangements hurried to the Milburn house and told the bereaved woman the conditions that confronted them and assured her that her wishes should be respected. It was a severe test. Tearfully she said that she had hoped to have the body of her husband back at the house during the night before it should be forever taken from her presence, but after listening to the statements of those who had come to talk with her she gave her consent to have the body remain at the City Hall. Senator Hanna and Judge Day advised her to give her consent, saying to her that it was only an evidence on the part of the people of Buffalo that they were loyal to the man who had been stricken down in this city.
     George B. Cortelyou, secretary to the late President, was asked to-day about the many reports that Mrs. McKinley is too ill to realize all that has happened. “Those stories are absolutely false,” said Mr. Cortelyou with warmth. “Considering Mrs. McKinley’s poor health, she has borne up exceedingly well. She is much depressed to-day on account of the removal of the President’s body to the City Hall. She seemed to want to be as near as possible to it. I suspect that the nearer she gets to the old home in Canton, with the inevitable final parting there, the more miserable she will be. Mrs. McKinley will go on the train to-morrow and will go to the White House. From Washington she will go to her home in Canton with the dead President.”
     Buffalo to-day became a city of mourners. The sorrow was indescribable. In the morning a simple service took place at the house, in Delaware-ave., where President McKinley died. Hymns were sung and prayer was offered over the body. Only the immediate family and the friends and political associates of Mr. McKinley were present. Then the body was borne to the City Hall, where it lay in state and remained over night.



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