The Funeral Begins
Buffalo Pays Its Tribute to the Murdered President.
BODY GOES TO WASHINGTON TO-DAY
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.
SAD AND SOLEMN RITES IN BUFFALO.
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.
THE BODY REMAINS AT THE CITY HALL.
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.