Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “Czolgosz Sits in Sullen Silence”
City of publication: St. Louis, Missouri
Date of publication: 28 October 1901
Volume number: 54
Issue number: 68
|“Czolgosz Sits in Sullen Silence.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch 28 Oct. 1901 v54n68: p. 3.|
|Leon Czolgosz (incarceration: Auburn, NY); Leon Czolgosz (execution: preparations, plans, etc.).|
|Leon Czolgosz; Edwin F. Davis; Clarence Egnor; William McKinley.|
Czolgosz Sits in Sullen Silence
Only Once Did the Assassin Rouse Himself.
AUBURN, N. Y., Oct. 28.—With no more feeling [than] an animal Leon Czolgosz, the strange wretch that killed President McKinley, awaits his doom. He sees no persons other than the guards who watch his every movement. He did not utter twenty words during the entire day. He eats but little of the extra food brought him. He does not ask to see the brother who came from Cleveland at his request. His sole indication of interest was at the noise made by the executioner in the chamber of death 26 feet from where he sat in sullen silence.
It was just before his dinner was brought. He had been sitting for three hours without saying a word. Clarence Egnor, another condemned man, who occupies the next cell to him, was reading from one of the prison books. Suddenly there came the sound of a hammer and the voices of men moving in the death chamber.
It was State Electrician Davis, the legal executioner, the twist of whose hand has sent 27 murderers to their death. Davis, with an assistant, was testing the apparatus, arranging the death chair to his satisfaction, connecting the wires.
As he gave directions Egnor stopped reading and said to the guard in front of his cell: “They’re getting the chair ready, ain’t they?”
The guard made no reply. But the question aroused the wretch in the cell next to him. He got up and paced the eight feet from door to wall feverishly, sat down again and then walked or rather staggered to the door. The guard came to the grating.
“Well,” he said, “what’s the matter?”
“Nothing,” said the assassin doggedly. “I thought I heard something. I thought I heard something.”
The guard made no reply. The assassin, hanging on to the door, looked moodily out at the outside wall. He said nothing for a minute.
“What do you want?” asked the guard. “Anything?”
“No,” stammered the assassin, not looking up. “I thought I heard something; that was all, that was all. What was it? What did he mean? What did he mean, that man in there?”
“He said they were getting the chair ready,” said the guard.
The assassin staggered away from the door and the other condemned man heard a moan as he sank back on his couch. He had to be called twice before he obeyed the command of the guard to eat his dinner. He ate sparingly and smoked only an inch or two of the cigar which was handed to him.