Source: Sterling Standard
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “Czolgosz Is a Low Type”
City of publication: Sterling, Illinois
Date of publication: 10 September 1901
Volume number: 35
Issue number: 73
|“Czolgosz Is a Low Type.” Sterling Standard 10 Sept. 1901 v35n73: p. .|
|Leon Czolgosz (mental health); Frederick Starr; Frederick Starr (public statements).|
|Leon Czolgosz [misspelled twice below]; Frederick Starr.|
|The third sentence in the fourth paragraph (below) is reproduced as given in the original document.|
Czolgosz Is a Low Type
Professor Starr Says He Is a Degenerate
MENTAL BALANCE LACKING
Anthropologist Gives Result of a Careful Study of the Photograph
of the Would-Be Assassin.
In the opinion of Professor Frederick
Starr, anthropologist and authority on degeneracy, of the University of Chicago,
the Bertillon photograph of Leon Czolgolsz shows emphatically that the would-be
murderer of the President is a degenerate, says the Chicago Record-Herald. Frightful
asymetry [sic], or non-balance shown clearly by the front view, is the
striking mark of degeneracy stamped on the face of the anarchist.
Professor Starr, who is considered to be one of the most careful and conservative, as well as among the most interesting of the research workers at the university, makes it a habit to refrain from studying the details of a great tragedy until after the emotions caused by the shock have given place to cooler judgment. He refuses to give expression to his impressions formed in the immediate excitement of a terrible affair.
However, Professor Starr was greatly interested last evening when a copy of the Bertillon photographs was handed to him at the university. He glanced at it a moment, and said quietly: “The man who shot the President.”
He laid the picture on his table, leaned on his elbows and looked into the reproduction of the assassin’s face fully five minutes, completely absorbed in thought. Then Professor Starr handed it back and said: “I have nothing to say.” But on being pressed ance, and in this photograph there is graph again and gave the following explicit statement:
“In the first place, although this is a photograph taken according to the Bertillon system, I don’t believe the photograph is a good one. The profile betrays nothing. The front view photograph is the important one, and it is difficult to get a front view in which the subject is not turned a little to one side or the other, thus making differences in the measurements on the sides.
“But if the picture is a good one, the most striking thing from the point of view of criminology is the frightful asymmetry. Asymmetry is non-balance, and in this photograph there is asymmetry to a notable degree.
“If this picture is well taken, he is phenomenally degenerate. Look, to begin with, at the whole pose of the head. You will observe a tilt to the left. If the picture is correct the asymmetry is enormous. Not only one side of the face and neck is shorter than the other, but one ear is too low. The nose bends to one side. The eyes are uneven in height.
“The mouth is the only thing I can be sure of. Whether the picture is well taken or not, we can tell about that and the mouth is sloping. This alone indicates degeneracy.
“The general impression gained by the photograph is that the man has suffered much from ill-health.”
The professor was here interrupted and it was stated that the biography of Czolgosz brought this out. The professor was quick to answer:
“I did not know that. I have not read anything about the history of the man.”
The professor concluded his statement of impression gained from the photograph as follows:
“On the whole many men, who are strong characters and stand well in their community, show much stronger marks of degeneracy than the photograph of this man. Apart from the asymmetry, the face is not strongly degenerate.”
Dr. Starr does not believe that there is any conspiracy, expressing it as his opinion that Czolgolsz did not shoot the President as the result of a plot.
“I think the indications, judging by the character of the man as indicated in the picture and by his actions, show that he was alone in his terrible deed. He is not a strong-minded man. The face gives the impression that he is undetermined. But he was influenced at those meetings to do something; and the particular idea came to him on the grounds. That his mind was not fully made up as to the particular act, is indicated by his hesitancy.”