Welcome to MAIWelcome to MAI


"Hello, I'm William McKinley."
partial cover image from "American Boys' Life of William McKinley"                                              
About MAI
Disclaimer
Help MAI


Who I Am
Contact Me



 


Publication information
view printer-friendly version
Source: Ouray Herald
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: Saw the President Shot
Author(s): anonymous
City of publication: Ouray, Colorado
Date of publication: 12 September 1901
Volume number: 13
Issue number: 24
Pagination: 1

 
Citation
Saw the President Shot. Ouray Herald 12 Sept. 1901 v13n24: p. 1.
 
Transcription
full text
 
Keywords
Lillie Simon; McKinley assassination (eyewitnesses); Mrs. Frank B. Wilcox; McKinley assassination (eyewitness accounts: Lillie Simon).
 
Named persons
Meyer Kayser; William McKinley; John G. Milburn; Lillie Simon; Mrs. Frank B. Wilcox.
 
Notes
The condition of the newspaper (an online scanned document) is poor throughout, rendering letters and words difficult to read.
 
Document

 

Saw the President Shot

     The Kansas City Star publishes the following story of the shoo[t]ing of President McKinl[e]y as told by an [e]y[e] witness to the affair . The s[t]ory will be of especial interest to Ouray [readers] from the fact t[h]at it is told by Miss Lillian Simon, a young lady w[e]ll known to many people in this city and a ni[e]ce of M[?]y[e]r Kayser. S[h]e has visited friends her[e] at various ti[m]es. The Star says:
     Miss Lillie Simon, a glove importer at 100 East El[e]venth stree[t] [sic], was [an] eye witness of th[e] shoo[t]ing of Pr[e]sident McKinley. Miss Simon h[a]d just shak[e]n ha[n]ds with th[e] presid[e]nt and [wa]s t[u]rning to look at [him] as she passed [wh]en she saw [t]he [fl]ash and heard the report of the shots. Mi[s]s Simon [wa]s returning from a visit to New York a[n]d stopped o[ff] for a day or two to visit Mrs. [F]rank [B]. Wilcox, formerly of Kansas City, [but] now of B[u]ffalo.
     I can [h]ardly bring mysel[f] to speak of the affair, s[a]id Miss Simon [th]is mor[n]ing. [I]t [wa]s so awful, th[e] shooting down of that grand [m]an. A[nd] [t]o thi[n]k that he had j[u]st shaken hands wi[th] me, such a cordi[a]l handclasp, too. He looked sq[u]arely in[t]o my [e]y[e]s a[nd] said: I [am] glad to know you. A[nd] he looked as if he meant what he said.
     [B]ut [t]o go back to the beginning. M[r]s. Wilcox and [m]yself were taki[n]g in the exposition. We had lunch[e]d [at] [Fereumburg?] resta[u]rant, one of th[e] pictu[re]sq[u]e feature[s] o[f] the Midway. [W]e were making [a] [h]asty tour of th[e] government building, when Mrs. Wilcox as[ked] [me] if I [did] not want to see the president. We walked over to [the] door of [t]he [t]emple of music.

FOURT[H] A[H]EAD OF T[H]E ASSASSIN.

     T[here] was a cro[w]d i[n] t[h]e doorw[ay], but we w[e]re fortu[n]ate i[n] getting up close, a[n]d w[h]en [the] ropes [d]ropped we wer[e] among th[e] [fi]rst to gain admi[ttan]ce. Probably seventy p[e]ople we[r]e in front of [u]s. Mrs. Wilcox dropped in a little ahead of [m]e. I was jus[t] in fro[n]t of that man with the unpron[o]un[c]able [sic] [na]me w[h]o shot the president. I asked the gentle[m]en in front of me if [th]ey would obj[ec]t to [m]y going a[head] in t[h]e line to wh[e]r[e] Mrs. Wilcox was. And that put four p[e]rsons between me and the assassin. The assassin was not [a] bad looking m[a]n. [H]e was [tall] and it looked to me as if the cu[ff] [o]f his s[h]ir[t] had been [t]ur[n]ed back over his righ[t] ha[n]d. [I] afterward learned th[at] the bit of white I [h]ad taken for [h]is cu[ff] was a handkerchief, concealing that awf[u]l revolv[e]r. We walked forward slowly.
     Mrs. Wilcox steppe[d] back to let m[e] go ahead. I saw Mr. Milburn, a dark, han[d]some man, s[tan]ding beside the presi[d]ent. I had see[n] [h]im before and recognized him. I saw several alert [unreadable line(s) of text] that they were secret service men. The [fi]rst thing I kne[w] I was in front of t[h]e president. [He] stood ther[e], smiling, with his [han]d exten[d]ed. As I put forward my rig[h]t hand he grasped it [firm]ly, smil[e]d i[n]to [m]y [f]ace and rem[a]rked I am gl[a]d to know you. He [he]ld [m]y hand [f]or a moment a[n]d t[h]e [th]ought ca[m]e to [m]e th[at] if he was as cordial with every one as he had b[e]en with me [h]e woul[d] be simply worn o[u]t [s]haking hands [b]efore the afternoon was over. I turned to [m]ak[e] m[e]nti[o]n of this to Mrs. [W]ilcox wh[e]n I [s]aw the t[a]ll yo[u]ng [m]an ext[e]nd hi[s] left h[a]nd to shake [h]ands and h[e]ard the so[und] of the disch[a]rg[e]. I distin[c]tly s[aw] [a] [flash] of fire. I was so startl[e]d [that] I t[h]oug[h]t I w[as] s[h]ot mys[e]lf . And then [t]he presid[e]nt f[e]ll back into t[h]e ar[m]s of t[h]os[e] about him. Then there see[m]e[d] [t]o b[e] a [h]eap of [me]n [a]t the fee[t] of [the] presid[e]nt.

A FAINT SMILE W[H]EN CARRIED OUT.

     T[h]e g[au]r[d]s [sic] [drove] [u]s back. W[e] stood th[e]r[e], ev[e]rybo[d]y speaking to each oth[e]r. N[ea]rly ev[e]rybody w[as] crying, [men and] wo[man] [sic], too. I could h[ea]r shou[t]s, b[u]t it was [a]ll part of [a] gre[a]t, al[m]ost indistinguis[ha]bl[e] nois[e]. W[e] [made] o[u]r way to t[he] door by w[h]ich w[e] h[a]d enter[e]d, but it w[a]s lock[e]d. A [m]o[m]ent l[a]t[e]r [a] g[au]rd [sic] c[ame] to c[a]ll [a]n [am]bulanc[e] [a]nd [he] let us out. [He] pre[sse]d [a] b[u]tton just outside th[e] [d]oor and in two min[u]tes [a]n [au]tomobil[e] [ambulance] w[a]s there[.] W[e] waited and saw th[e] pr[e]sid[e]nt c[a]rri[e]d o[u]t. T[here] [wa]s [a half smile] on [his face]. [He] s[eemed] [t]o [be] suff[e]ring, but it [a]pp[ea]r[e]d to [me] th[a]t [he] w[ante]d th[e] p[e]opl[e] to bel[ieve] t[ha]t h[e] w[asnt] [hu]rt m[u]ch. So [he] j[us]t [sm]il[e]d, although h[e] [m]ust [have] b[ee]n [suffe]ri[n]g th[e] [m]ost int[ense] [a]gony. [He seemed] to [me like a] gr[a]nd wounded [s]ol[die]r who [had] j[ust] p[e]r[f]orm[e]d [s]om[e] gr[eat] d[ee]d o[f] brav[e]ry [which had] [ea]rn[e]d [fo]r [him a] mort[a]l w[oun]d. [H]is v[es]t w[a]s op[e]n [and] I co[u]ld [see a] t[h]in [stream] o[f] bloo[d] tri[c]k[l]ing do[w]n t[he] fro[n]t o[f] [his] [shi]rt.
     T[he]n w[e] bot[h] l[ef]t t[he] ground [sic] [an]d w[en]t [home]. T[he] [scene] [ha]d so compl[etel]y [unerved] [sic] [me that] I l[eft] [Buffa]lo t[ha]t [nig]ht. It w[as] [nea]rly two hour[s] [bef]or[e] I l[eft] [a]nd w[hile] th[e] shoot[ing] oc[curred] [at] 4 o[c]lo[c]k, t[here] w[as] [n]ot [an] [e]xtr[a] on t[he] [s]tr[ee]t[s] [until] 7:[3]0 o[c]lo[c]k t[ha]t [e]v[e]ning. I[n] K[ansas] City t[here] wo[u]ld [ha]v[e] b[een] [an extra] o[n] t[he] [street] [i]n t[en] [mi]nu[tes].

 

 


top of page