Publication information
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Source: Phillipsburg Herald
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “Destroyed by Acid”
Author(s): anonymous
City of publication: Phillipsburg, Kansas
Date of publication: 2 November 1901
Volume number: 23
Issue number: 1
Pagination: 1

“Destroyed by Acid.” Phillipsburg Herald 2 Nov. 1901 v23n1: p. 1.
full text
Cornelius V. Collins (public statements); Leon Czolgosz (execution: government response); Leon Czolgosz (execution: reprisals); Leon Czolgosz (disposal of remains); Leon Czolgosz (incarceration: Auburn, NY: visitations); Czolgosz family (at Auburn, NY).
Named persons
Thomas Bandowski; Cornelius V. Collins; Leon Czolgosz; Waldeck Czolgosz [variant spelling of first name below]; J. Warren Mead.
Semi-Weekly No. 62.


Destroyed by Acid


Warden of Auburn Prison Quickly Disposed of Czolgosz’ Body.
Autopsy Showed That His Brain Was Normal and His Body
Healthy—Warden Mead Received Hundreds of Threatening Letters.

     Auburn, N. Y., Oct. 29.—The physicians holding the autopsy decided, after a critical examination, that Czolgosz’s brain was normal if not above normal. Prison Superintendent Collins made the following statement to the Associated press: “Just consider that within about six weeks from the death of his distinguished victim, Czolgosz was regularly tried, convicted, sentenced and executed, and this despite the fact that the law compelled us to give him four weeks to prepare for death. All has been done in a dignified way, and the greatest credit is due to Warden Mead for the care he has taken to strip the case of sensationalism. The execution was one of the most successful ever conducted in the state. Extraordinary care had to be taken in the case, because both the warden and I received hundreds of threatening letters, many of them asserting in violent and intemperate language that the prisoner would never be put in the chair. I have decided for the present that we will not destroy any of the hundreds of letters written to Czolgosz, the warden and myself as to the case. Eventually they will be destroyed, but it has struck me that perhaps we should make a list of them, especially of those letters signed with full and proper names, in which condolence was offered to the prisoner or threats against us were made. My plan is to get the address of these people and keep the list for police reference. I believe that there may come a time when such a list would be valuable in running down anarchists.”
     After the autopsy the body was placed in a black stained pine coffin, every portion of the anatomy being replaced. Shortly afterward it was taken to the prison cemetery, and an extraordinary precaution taken to completely destroy it. A carboy of acid had been obtained and poured upon the body in the coffin after it had been lowered into the grave. Straw was used in the four corners of the grave as the earth was put in to give vent to such gases as might form. It is the belief of the physicians that the body will be entirely disintegrated within 12 hours. During that time and as long as deemed necessary a guard will be kept over the unmarked grave.
     Waldek Czolgosz and Waldek Thomas Bandowski, brother and brother-in-law of the assassin, called at the prison at two o’clock. They sent word into Warden Mead that they wished to see the body of Leon Czolgosz. The warden told them that the body had been buried for more than an hour and that if they wished he would send a guard to guide them to the grave. They answered that they did not care to go to the cemetery, but were anxious to arrange for the collection of the insurance on the life of the dead murderer and asked that a certificate of death be given to them. The warden promised them a certificate and they departed. The insurance about which they talked is supposed to be in a fraternal society to which the murderer belonged.



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