Saturday, July 19, 2014

The Significance of Yellow Journalism, by Lydia Kingsmill Commander



YELLOW journalism is outwardly distinguished by the flaring makeup of the paper, the striking headlines in startling type and the free use of illustrations; by the attention given to crime, sports, divorces and the tragic aspects of life in general; and by the constant appeal to the emotions in the presentation of the news. Human interest goes into every column; everything is a story and is told as such.

No papers were ever before, no others are now, so execrated and so beloved as are the yellow journals. But whether approved or condemned they must be considered, because of their tremendous influence. Their circulation figures are staggering. Not merely thousands, nor even hundreds of thousands, but millions of Americans read the yellow papers regularly. Therefore they cannot be ignored by anyone who would understand his age and his people.

The harshest criticism of yellow journalism is passed upon its method of obtaining circulation by indulging the low tastes of its readers. This is most reprehensible in the eyes of people of refined nature, who revolt at the details of crimes, despise prize-fights or horse-racing and loathe the exposure of family scandals.

But, after all, is not the difference between the readers and the critics of the yellow press one of cultivation, rather than of kind? The latter simply prefer scandal, crime and combat that deal with imaginary or historical characters. They are indifferent to the tragedy enacted yesterday in a slum tenement; but they follow with vivid interest the investigations of Sherlock Holmes; and thrill with the horror of Poe's tales or Balzac's gruesome stories or Stevenson's morbid, ghoulish, dual creature, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Is not the biography which stands preeminent in the opinion of the world - Boswell's Life of Johnson - a mass of petty, personal detail, a bundle of gossip? The high literary skill of the masterwriters makes yellow-journal subjects acceptable to the cultured few who turn with disgust from the crude newspaper of the multitude.

The very people who affect to despise the racing-reports of the yellow press attended in thousands the play of "Ben Hur," and in hundreds of thousands read the book; yet the whole interest of both centers around the chariot-race.

The Shakesperian tragedies and the Wagnerian operas, appreciation of which is supposed to unfailingly indicate a cultivated taste, are filled with battle, murder, tragedy and sudden death, such as would make first-class "copy" for the yellowest of journals.

Even the clergyman who denounces the sensationalism of the yellow press has possibly within the hour read aloud to an attentive and approving congregation a sanguinary chapter from the gory records of the Old Testament.

The public response to the yellow newspaper, the mighty circulation it rolls up, shows that it is just what the mass of people want. The finer a paper is the less it is in demand. This is a pity, but it is true; and the yellow journal looks the facts in the face, and appeals to people as they are. For the shortcomings of the yellow press we must blame the American people. As a whole we are interested in crime, scandal, prize-fights and horseracing. If we were not, the yellow journals would not be the most popular newspapers in the country.

But a sensational presentation of the news is not the only distinguishing characteristic of the yellow newspaper. If it were, there would be little to be said in its favor. The yellow journal, like the American people, though faulty in the extreme, has also its full share of virtues. It is vulgar and emotional; but it is kind and generous, active, wide-awake and progressive. It is bound to do many wrong things because it is doing something all the time. The only person who never does wrong is the one who never does anything. The man who never makes a mistake never makes anything else.

The yellow journal is not merely a newspaper; it is a living creature. It has a heart and conscience, as well as brains and strength. Other papers have opinions; it has feelings. It loves or hates, pities and protects or despises and exposes. Ordinary journalism talks; yellow journalism acts.

Each of the two great yellow papers of New York, the World and the Journal, has a colony of criminals in Sing Sing, offenders with whom the regular officers of the law either could not or would not deal, but whom the yellow press tracked and brought to justice. A few years ago a child was kidnapped and the police were powerless to find her. The Journal offered $2,000 reward and put its detective-reporters to work. The child was discovered and restored to her parents and the kidnappers, a husband and wife, are in penitentiary.

Quick-get-rich schemers, policy-kings, tricksters and thieves of every sort, as well as murderers, owe conviction and punishment to the activity and relentless pursuit of the yellow press. It would be impossible to enumerate a tenth of the crimes that have been exposed and criminals convicted by these papers. The law-breakers of New York fear yellow journalism far more than they do the police.

Yellow journalism guards the people's interests. Three summers ago the Ice-Trust had New York at its mercy, when ice meant life to hundreds, especially among the babes of the tenements. The price was raised to sixty cents a hundred and no five-cent pieces would be sold. This was annoying even to the well-to-do; but it brought suffering and death to the homes of the poor.

All the papers complained, but the Journal promptly began a lawsuit against the trust. Exposure, threats and legal action combined to destroy the ring, reduce the price of ice and restore to the poor the five-cent pieces which were all they could afford.

Two years ago gas was soaring in price and diminishing in supply while by some trickery meters measured incredible measurements. The World made a systematic examination, exposed the roguery, and cut the gas-bills of the city in two.

A few years since a scheme was put on foot to get possession of the New York city water-supply. It was a plausible plan; and in order to make it work reflections were cast upon the purity of the present sources. The two yellow papers were roused and vied with each other in exposing the treachery. They had investigations made by competent men and published sworn statements that convinced the people and threw the schemers out.

The activity of the Journal in its opposition to the Remsen gas-steal and its present suit against the Coal-Trust, which is bringing to light the unscrupulous and lawless methods of that oppressive combine, are present-day history.

Yellow journalism is a strong educational force. In the first place it teaches people to read regularly, who have never looked at print before. The great circulations of the yellow journals do not lessen those of other papers, but rather increase them; for the person who has learned to read one paper is apt to buy more.

In gathering the world's news, which is contemporanous history, the yellow journals are stopped by no trouble, staggered by no expense. The Journal has a wire to San Francisco which costs it $300 a day. Both papers keep representatives not only in the prominent cities and countries, as all modern newspapers must, but in the remote corners of the earth. The result is that they obtain the first and the most detailed news from everywhere, sometimes at almost unbelievable cost.

But in addition to the news, the yellow papers constantly record the progress of science, invention and exploration. Every new discovery is chronicled in language so simple that a child of ten or twelve can understand it. The most ignorant classes of the community are kept informed of the work of the leading inventors and the discoveries of the great biologists, chemists, travelers and astronomers. They know something of radium, N-rays and Sir William Ramsey's five new elements.

This puts the mass of the nation in touch with the highest work of the world, thus creating a public sentiment favorable to progress and encouraging the development of science. If there seem to be no relation between the achievements of our scientific men and the approval of the ignorant, it need only be remembered that a few centuries ago every effort to widen human knowledge was met with stern opposition; and the daring man who would add a new contribution to the sum of truth was apt to pay for his hardihood with his life. Gutenberg, Coster, Faust, Pfiester, Castaldi, Mentol and Valdfoghel were all persecuted by their generation because they invented type. That same type has so educated people that to-day X-rays and wireless telegraphy meet a warm and ready welcome. All progress is ultimately based on the intelligence of the majority.

Supplementing its, accounts of actual achievements, the Journal frequently gives, in simple language, the gist of valuable but abstractly-written books by great thinkers. Sometimes the editorial columns of that paper will contain a review of a new scientific or philosophical work of which the majority of people would never otherwise hear. Two summers ago it published serially the entire Life of Jefferson by Thomas E. Watson.

In the course of a year the World and the Journal publish articles from the majority of the leaders of thought in this country, and many from prominent foreigners. Almost every man and woman of note at some time contributes to the yellow press. It would be much easier to give a list of those who never write for these papers than to enumerate those who do.

These articles, which go to the people for a penny, or, in the Sunday edition, for five cents, are often secured at considerable expense. A recently-returned explorer was paid $300 by one of the yellow papers for a Sunday story of about eight hundred words. A much-coveted article from an eminent public man cost the same paper $450. $2,000 a year was offered to a prominent divine for a monthly sermonette of five hundred words; and one dollar a word promised to a famous American author for a thousand-word story. All this matter is given to the public at a price which does not pay for the white paper on which it is printed. It is education for the people, practically free.

Several years ago the Journal sent three boys, one from New York, one from San Francisco and one from Chicago, around the world by different routes, to see which would first make the circuit. The boys were selected by means of a literary and athletic contest in the schools of their respective cities, and each was accompanied on his trip by a reporter. Accounts of their travels were published daily and the countries through which they passed described, thus improving the geographical knowledge of all who followed them. To stimulate interest prizes were given to a boy and a girl in each the three cities who could first guess which contestant would win the race and tell most nearly at what time he would again reach his home. The prizes were trips, - one a ten-days' sojourn at the Buffalo exposition in care of a guardian, all expenses defrayed by the Journal.

Every year thousands of dollars are distributed by the yellow papers as rewards for the display of intelligence. Prizes for puzzles, for the best letter on some subject or the cleverest way of meeting some emergency are continually offered.

Nor is the physical side of education neglected. Exercises are described and illustrated, big prices being paid to specialists for the articles. Food, clothing, the care of children and of the sick, what to do in cold weather and what not to do when it is hot, the care of the hair, the hands and the complexion, all in turn receive the attention of the yellow journals and are discussed, - not in back columns tucked away, but on the editorial page as often as not. Everything is told the people that can help to make them comfortable, healthy, happy and intelligent.

Letters of inquiry on any subject receive careful attention. When necessary money as well as time is spent to acquire the information sought. Each of the yellow journals keeps open, from June till September, a number of " Information Bureaux," to give to the public, free of charge, all that can be known in regard to summer trips, hotels, cottages for rent, etc. Each paper publishes yearly an almanac which is a condensed encyclopaedia.

Morality also receives attention. Not another paper in New York would unite with the Journal in its present active attack on whiskey. For over a year past it has been publishing editorials and cartoons against liquor. For a long time it had a daily record of the crimes and evils traceable to drink, which were chronicled in the day's news. Naturally it has lost all its whiskey advertising, - worth $100,000 a year. Both the World and the Journal are strenuous opponents of cigarettes, at the cost of valuable advertising contracts. These papers continually deal editorially with the various vices of humanity, in language absolutely simple but so forceful that the most careless or hardened must be impressed.

The yellow journals are full of sympathy. They are like human beings, with big, kind hearts. Whenever and where-ever there is trouble they spring to the rescue. When the great Galveston flood brought devastation and death to a whole city, almost overnight the Hearst papers, in New York, Chicago and San Francisco, equipped three full trains with provisions, clothing, medicines, bandages, doctors and nurses and sent them flying across the country to the suffering survivors. The World sent a similar train from New York. Such help, in proportionate measure, has been despatched by either or both of the great yellow papers to the scene of every extensive catastrophe.

In the city the yellow journals are the constant resource of the unfortunate. If a child is stolen, a young girl lured from her home, a husband or wjfe deserts the family, or an aged relative wanders away, the police may fail to locate the missing one; but those bereaved turn, with child like faith, to the yellow journals, which seldom are unable to solve the mystery of the disappearance.

Those who suffer injustices and report their grievances to either of the yellow journals find a prompt and powerful friend. This is realized by the poor, who endure a thousand petty but bitter wrongs. My laundress recently told me of the oppression of one of her neighbors, by an overbearing landlord, and concluded with: "Do you think I'd stand that? Well, I wouldn't! I'd go right straight and tell the Journal!"

All summer long the World and the Journal rival each other in kindness to the poor. The World has a "Fresh-Air Fund," for sending little ones to the country. It receives contributions; but much of the money the paper itself supplies.

During the month of July the Journal gives free excursions to a nearby beach. About a hundred children are taken daily, always under the charge of responsible people. They get the trip, their mid-day meal, a bath in the ocean, a play on the sands and entrance to many of the amusement places with which beaches abound.

A year ago the same paper offered a two-weeks' vacation, at a beach or in the mountains, to the entire family having the largest number of children attending the public-schools of the city. Two families having an equal number (eight, I think) applied. The paper generously rose to the occasion and sent one family to the mountains and the other to the beach for a glorious fortnight.

Each December for several years the Journal has asked all children not expecting a visit from Santa Claus to send in word what toys they want. Every address and request is recorded. On Christmas day, from early morning till late at night the city is traversed by a score of great vans, each loaded with toys, in charge of a Santa Claus. Trip after trip is made and load after load of toys distributed. When all who have written have been supplied the vans drive up and down the poorest streets, bestowing Christmas cheer on every waif of the side-walk. It is because of such kindnesses that the people love the yellow journals and listen to their teachings.

The two principal educational forces in this country are the public-schools and the newspapers. With the young the schools deal more or less successfully. But among the mature we have great masses of people who are densely ignorant. Some have missed school through going to work in childhood; some live in states where the public-schools are very inefficient; and some are immigrants.

We have over two and a quarter millions of males of voting age, classified in the census as "illiterate." We have over a million and a half people above ten years of age who are unable to speak English. Over five millions of our male voters are foreign-born. There are, besides, over a million men of voting-age, who are foreigners yet unnaturalized. Altogether we have a foreign-born population of more than ten and a quarter millions; and it is being tremendously increased every year. Nearly a million immigrants came in last year, and no lessening of the tide is at present reported.

Nor is this foreign element homogeneous. All the principal countries of the world contribute to it. Russian Jews, Italians, Germans, Irish, Poles, Hungarians, Greeks and Assyrians alike come to the United States and amalgamate with the American nation. Some of our immigrants are intelligent, high-class people, the best their native lands can supply. But many are illiterate and crushed peasants, needing training of every sort. All require to be taught American ideas and ideals.

We have, too, an enormous native population on a very low level of intelligence. Many who can read and write, and thus escape the classification "illiterate," are still extremely ignorant. Yet, if men, they can vote and help to determine the destiny of the nation. Altogether the foreign and the ignorant comprise the bulk of the American people.

The principal problem that confronts us in our struggle to develop an American democracy, is the education and uplifting of this vast mass. We meet the question of enlightening children with our compulsory education acts; but we cannot force knowledge upon grown people.

Theories of every sort are constantly advanced; but the one institution that is successfully coping with this problem, day after day, and getting practical results, is the yellow journal. It gives the people what they want, - sensation, crime and vulgar sports, - thus inducing them to read. But having secured its audience, it teaches them, simply, clearly, patiently, the lessons they need.

Undeniably the yellow journals are not "nice" and "proper." But neither are the people they are intended to reach. When a new employee begins work on one of the yellow papers his first experience is apt to be an interview with the editor-in-chief, during which the tactics and purposes of the paper are explained to him.

"We don't think our paper is 'nice,'" says the editor. "But we do know it reaches the people. It is our intention to teach the people, and the first step is to get them to listen to us. We believe that it is better to raise a whole city one inch than to hoist a few men or women ten feet in the air."

That is the principle of yellow journalism. It appeals to two classes of people, - those who need it and those who understand it. There remain many who disapprove, either because they have a superficial acquaintance with the papers they criticise or because they judge everything in the world by its relation to themselves.

There are literary papers enough, but who in the tenements reads them? No one; for they are written only for the educated, in utter disregard of the great majority who most need instruction. Their very language puts them beyond the comprehension of any but the fairly educated.

The literary law of the yellow journals, on the contrary, is simplicity and vividness. To the World employes Mr. Pulitzer says: "Write every sentence so that the most ignorant man on the Bowery can understand it," and the primary mandate of the Journal is "Simplify!"

Thus, in the adult kindergarten of yellow journalism, the great underlying mass of the nation, formerly unconsidered and untaught, are prepared for the duties of American citizenship.

Lydia Kingsmill Commander.

New York, N. Y.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

The Associated Press, by Melville Stone




WITH the accession of Mr. William Henry Smith to the office of general manager of the Associated Press, less than twenty-five years ago, there came a change for the better in the administration. The Western papers which had been admitted to a share in the management demanded more enterprise and a report of more varied character. The policy of limiting the field to "routine news" - sport, markets, shipping, etc. - was abandoned, and the institution began to show evidences of real journalistic life and ability. It startled the newspaper world by occasionally offering exclusive and well-written items of general interest. When Mr. Elaine was closing what promised to be a successful political campaign in 1884, it was an Associated Press man who shattered all precedents, as well as the candidate's hopes, by reporting Dr. Burchard's disastrous "Rum, Romanism, and Rebellion" speech. This was then an unheard-of display of enterprise.

Two years later, the same reporter scored again. He had been sent to Mount McGregor with many others to report General Grant's last illness. He was shrewd enough to arrange in advance with the doctor for prompt information of the final event. A system of signals had been agreed upon, and when, one day, the doctor sauntered out upon the veranda of the Drexel cottage and drew a handkerchief from his pocket and wiped his hands, the reporter knew that the general was dead and telegraphed the fact throughout the world. For months afterward it was spoken of with wonder as the Associated Press "scoop."


Then came the Samoan disaster, in 1885, and with it a disclosure that an Associated Press man might not only be capable of securing exclusive news, but might also be able to write it in a creditable way. Mr. John P. Dunning of the San Francisco bureau happened to be in Apia when the great storm broke over the islands. In the roadstead were anchored three American war-vessels, the Trenton, Nipsic, and Vandalia; three German warships, the Adler, Olga, and Eber; and the British cruiser Calliope. All of the American and German ships were driven upon the coral reefs and destroyed, involving the loss of one hundred and fifty lives. The Calliope, a more modern vessel with superior engines, was able to escape. As she pushed her way into the heavy sea, in the teeth of the hurricane, the jackies of the Trenton dressed ship, while her band played the British national anthem. It was a profoundly tragic salutation from those about to die.

Mr. Dunning's graphic story, which will long be accepted as a masterpiece of descriptive literature, was mailed to San Francisco, and a month later was published by the newspapers of the Associated Press. It was a revelation to those who had long believed the organization incapable of producing anything more exciting than a market quotation. It was also an inspiration to those who were to succeed Mr. Smith in the administration of the business. It revealed the possibilities in store for the association.

In the earlier days telegraphic facilities were so limited and the cost of messages was so great that it was necessary to report everything in the briefest form. It was enough that the facts were disclosed, and little heed was paid to the manner of presentation. Moreover, a great majority of those writing the despatches were telegraph operators, destitute of literary training.

The advantages of an Associated Press newspaper were very great. It was scarcely possible for a competitor to make headway against the obstacles which he was compelled to face. Not only was the burden of expense enormous, but the telegraph company which was in close alliance with the association frequently delayed his service, or refused to transmit it at any price. It followed that the quantity of news which an editor was able to furnish his readers became the measure of his enterprise and ability. It was his proudest boast that his paper printed "all the news." James Gordon Bennett, St., of the New York "Herald," and Wilbur F. Storey of the Chicago "Times," set the pace, and won much fame by lavish expenditures for telegrams, which were often badly written.


As new cables were laid, and land wires were extended, and rival telegraph companies appeared, the cost of messages was reduced, and there came a demand for better writing and better editing. The hour for selection in news had arrived. It was obvious that no editor could any longer print all the information offered him, and it was equally evident that the reader, whose range of vision had been surprisingly widened by the modern means of communication, had neither time nor inclination to read it all. Editors who could and would edit were required. Newspapers presenting a carefully prepared perspective of the day's history of the world were needed.

Thus was clearly outlined the path along which the Associated Press must travel. Its resources were unlimited. Through its foreign alliances, it had a representative at every point of interest abroad; and, through its own membership, it was able to cover every part of the United States. It was only necessary to organize, educate, and utilize these forces. Strong men, specially trained for the work in hand, must be chosen, and stationed at strategic points. The ordinary correspondent would not do; indeed, as a rule, he of all men was least fitted for Associated Press work. Writing for a single newspaper, he might follow the editorial bias of his journal; and even though he was inexact, his statements were likely to pass unchallenged. In writing for the Associated Press any departure from strict accuracy and impartiality was certain to be discovered.

But the strategic points were not the only ones to be looked after. News of the highest importance, requiring for its proper treatment the best literary skill, was sure to develop in the most remote quarters. To find men in these out-of-the-way spots, imbued with the American idea of journalistic enterprise, and qualified to see an event in its proper proportions and to describe it adequately and vividly, was a serious undertaking. Yet the thing must be done, if the ideal service was to be reached.


Within the limits of the United States, the task was a comparatively easy one. Here men of the required character were obtainable. It was only necessary to select them with care and to drill them to promptness, scrupulous accuracy, impartiality, and a graphic style. So wide-spread is American education that it was soon discovered that the best men could usually be found in the villages and the smaller cities. They were more sincere, better informed, and less "bumptious" than the journalistic Gascons so frequently employed on the metropolitan press.

For the foreign field, greater obstacles were presented. Our methods were not European methods, and the Europeans were not news-mad peoples. At the best; the contributions of any news-agency to the columns of any foreign newspaper were exceedingly limited and prosaic. This is particularly true upon the Continent, where the journals devote themselves chiefly to well-written political leaders and feuilletons, and where news has a distinctly secondary place.

I took up the subject with the chiefs of the foreign agencies. Fortunately, in Baron Herbert de Reuter, head of the great company which bears his name, I found a sympathetic ally. During twelve years of intimate intercourse with him, he has shown at all times journalistic qualities of a very high order. A man of brilliant intellect, scholarly, modest, having a keen sense of the immense responsibility of his office, but of nervous temperament and tireless energy, he has shared every impulse to reach a higher level of excellence in the service. With his cooperation and that of Dr. Mantler, chief of the German agency, a zealous and efficient manager, but lacking the encouragement and stimulus of a news-reading and news-demanding public, substantial progress was made. The object desired was a correct perspective of the daily history of the world.

The end could not be reached at a single bound. Long-continued effort and the exercise of no small degree of patience were necessary. What has been done may perhaps best be illustrated by a few examples. When Mr. Chamberlain resigned from Mr. Balfour's ministry two years ago, it was the Associated Press in London which gave this news to the world; and when the Alaskan Commission was summoned to meet in London in the autumn of 1903, the keenest interest in its deliberations was manifested in both countries, and the efforts of the Associated Press were naturally bent on keeping its readers fully informed of the deliberations of the commission. A few minutes after the final decision of the commission was reached, one Saturday evening, it had been flashed across the Atlantic. No official confirmation of this fact was obtainable in England until the meeting of the commission on Monday; but so implicit was the confidence felt in the news which had been published in America by the Associated Press that the English papers accepted its statements as true.


On the afternoon of September 6, 1901, worn out by a long period of exacting labor, I set out for Philadelphia, with the purpose of spending a few days at Atlantic City. When I reached the Broad-street station in the Quaker City, I was startled by a number of policemen crying my name. I stepped up to one, who pointed to a boy with an urgent message for me. President McKinley had been shot at Buffalo, and my presence was required at our Philadelphia office at once. A message had been sent to me at Trenton, but my train had left the station precisely two minutes ahead of its arrival. Handing my baggage to a hotel porter, I jumped into a cab and dashed away to our office. I remained there until dawn of the following morning.

The opening pages of the story of the assassination were badly written, and I ordered a substitute prepared. An inexperienced reporter stood beside President McKinley in the Music-hall at Buffalo when Czolgosz fired the fatal shot. He seized a neighboring telephone and notified our Buffalo correspondent, and then pulled out the wires, in order to render the telephone a wreck, so that it was a full half-hour before any additional details could be secured.

I ordered competent men and expert telegraph operators from Washington, Albany, New York, and Boston to harry to Buffalo by the fastest trains. All that night the Buffalo office was pouring forth a hastily written, but faithful and complete account of the tragedy, and by daybreak a relief force was on the ground. Day by day, through the long vigil while the President's life hung in the balance, each incident was truthfully and graphically reported. In the closing hours of the great tragedy false reports of the President's death were circulated for the purpose of influencing the stock-market, and, to counteract them, Secretary Cortelyou wrote frequent signed statements, giving the facts to the Associated Press.


On the night of May 3, 1902, a brief telegram from St. Thomas, Danish West Indies, reported that Mont Pelee, the volcano on the island of Martinique, was in eruption, and that the town of St. Pierre was enveloped in a fog and covered with ashes an inch deep. Cable communication was cut off. The following morning 1 set about securing the facts. We had two correspondents on the island, one at St. Pierre and the other at Fort de France, nine miles away; but clearly neither of these could be reached.

Fortunately, investigation disclosed that an old friend, a talented newspaper man, was the United States consul at Guadeloupe, an island only twelve hours distant. I instantly appealed to the State Department at Washington to give him a leave of absence, and, when this was granted, I cabled him to charter a boat and go to St. Pierre at once, add secure and transmit an adequate report. The Associated Press men at St. Vincent, St. Thomas, Porto Rico, Barbados, Trinidad, and St. Lucia were instructed to hurry forward any information that might reach them, and to endeavor to get to Martinique by any available means. St. Thomas alone was able to respond with a short telegram, three days later, announcing the destruction of the Martinique sugar-factories, which were only two miles distant from St. Pierre. The despatch also reported the loss of one hundred and fifty lives, and the existence of a panic at St. Pierre because of the condition of the volcano, which was now in full eruption and threatening everything on the island. Mr. Aym6, the consul at Guadeloupe, found difficulty in chartering a boat, but finally succeeded, and, after a thrilling and dangerous night run through a thick cloud of falling ashes and cinders, arrived before the ill-fated city. The appalling character of the catastrophe was then disclosed. Thirty thousand people, the population of the town, had been buried under a mass of hot ashes; one single human being had escaped. It was enough to make the stoutest heart grow faint.

But Ayme was a trained reporter, inured by long experience to trying scenes; and he set to work promptly to meet the responsibility which had been laid upon him. Our St. Pierre man had gone to his death on the common pyre, but Mr. Ivanes, the Associated Press correspondent at Fort de France, survived. With him Mr. Ayme joined effort, and, with great courage and at serious risk, they went over the blazing field and gathered the gruesome details of the disaster. Then Mr. Ayme wrote his story, returned to the cable-station at Guadeloupe, and sent it. It was a splendid piece of work, worthy of the younger Pliny, whose story of a like calamity at Pompeii has come down to us through two thousand years. It filled a page of the American newspapers on the morning of May 11, and was telegraphed to Europe. It was the first adequate account given to the world. Mr. Ayme returned to Martinique and spent three weeks in further investigation, leaving his post of duty only when the last shred of information had been obtained and transmitted. As a result of his terrible experience, his health was impaired, and, although he was given a prolonged leave of absence, he has never recovered. It cost the Associated Press over $30,000 to report this event.


The illness and death of the late Pope constituted another event which called for news-gathering ability of a high order. Preparations had been made long in advance. Conferences were held with the Italian officials and with the authorities at the Vatican, all looking to the establishment of relations of such intimacy as to guarantee us the news. We had been notified by the Italian Minister of Telegraphs that, because of the strained relations existing between his government and the papal court, he should forbid the transmission of any telegrams announcing the Pope's death for two hours after the fatal moment, in order that Cardinal Rampolla might first notify the papal representatives in foreign countries. This was done as a gracious act of courtesy to the church.

To meet the emergency, we arranged a code message to be sent by all cable-lines, which should be addressed, not to the Associated Press, but to the general manager in person, and should read: "Number of missing bond, _______. (Signed) Montefiore." This bore on its face no reference to the death of the Pontiff, and would be transmitted. The blank was to be filled with the hour and moment of the Pope's death, reversed. That is, if he died at 2 :53, the message would read: "Melstone, New York. Number of missing bond, 352. (Signed) Montefiore." The object of reversing the figures was, of course, to prevent a guess that it was a deception in order to convey the news. If the hour had been properly written, they might have suspected the purport of the message.

When, finally, the Pope died, although his bed was completely surrounded by burning candles, an attendant hurried from the room into an anteroom and called for a candle to pass before the lips of the dying man, to determine whether he still breathed. This was the signal for another attache, who stepped to the telephone and announced to our correspondent, two miles away, that the Pope was dead. Unfortunately, the hour of his death was four minutes past four, so that whichever way it was written, whether directly or the reverse, it was 404.

Nevertheless, the figures were inserted in the blank in the bulletin which had been prepared, it was filed with the telegraph company, and it came through to New York in exactly nine minutes from the moment of death. It was relayed at Havre, and again at the terminal of the French Cable Company in New York, whence it came to our office on a short wire. The receiving operator there shouted the news to the entire operating-room of the Associated Press, and every man on every key on every circuit out of New York flashed the announcement that the Pope had died at four minutes past four; so that the fact was known in San .Francisco within eleven minutes after its actual occurrence.

The Reuter, Havas, and Wolff agents located in our office in New York retransmitted the announcement to London, Paris, and Berlin, giving those cities their first news of the event. A comparison of the report of the London "Times" with that of any morning paper in the United States on the day following the death of the Pope would show that, both as to cjuantity and quality, our report was vastly superior. The London "Times" had a column and a half; the New York "Times" had a page of the graphic story of the scenes in and about the Vatican. The New York "Times" story was ours. This was so notable an event that it occasioned comment throughout the world.

During the illness of the Pope I ordered a number of the best men from our London, Paris, and Vienna offices to Rome to assist our resident men. The advantage of such an arrangement was that the London men were in close touch with church dignitaries of England, while our representatives from France and Vienna had their immediate circle of acquaintances among the church dignitaries of those countries. The result was that Mr. Cortesi, the chief of our Roman office, was perfectly familiar with the local surroundings and was on intimate terms with Drs. Lapponi and Mazzoni of the Vatican, as well as with the other resident officials of the church, and was always able to command attention from them. Besides, he had not only the advantage of the assistance of trained men from our other European offices, but he had also the advantage of their acquaintance. We were enabled day by day to present an extraordinary picture of the scenes at the Vatican, and day by day the bulletins upon the condition of the Holy Father were transmitted with amazing rapidity. The death-bed scenes at Buffalo, when President McKinley was lying ill at the Milburn house, were reported with no greater degree of promptness and no greater detail. The funeral scenes were also covered in a remarkably ample way, and with astounding rapidity. Then came the conclave for the election of a new pope. It was to be secret, and every effort was made to prevent its proceedings from becoming public. A brick wall was constructed about the hall to prevent any one having access to it. But, to the amazement of every one, the Associated Press had a daily report of all that happened. One of the members of the Noble Guard was an Associated Press man. Knowing the devotion of the average Italian for the dove, he took with him into the conclave chamber his pet dove, which was a homing pigeon trained to go to our office. But Cardinal Rampolla could not be deceived: he ordered the pigeon killed. Other plans, however, were more successful. Laundry lists sent out with the soiled linen of a cardinal, and a physician's prescriptions sent to a pharmacy, proved to be code messages which were deciphered in our office. We were enabled not only to give a complete and accurate story of the happenings within the conclave chamber, but we announced the election of the new Pope, which occurred about 11 A.m. in Rome, so promptly that, owing to the difference in time, it was printed in the morning papers of San Francisco of that day. We were also enabled to send the announcement back to Europe before it was received from Rome direct, and it was our message that was printed in all the European capitals. The Italian authorities did not interfere with these messages.


Of late years the international yacht races off Sandy Hook have, as a rule, been reported by wireless telegraphy. Stations have been erected on Long Island and on the coast of New Jersey, and a fast-going yacht, equipped with Marconi apparatus, has followed the racers. A running story, transmitted through the air to the coast, has been instantly relayed by land wires to the main office of the association in New York, and thence distributed over the country. Such a report of the contest costs over $25,000.


"Presidential years" are always trying ones for the management. In 1896 the friends of Speaker Reed were incensed because we were unable to see that a majority of the delegates to the Republican National Convention were Reed men. Not that I think they really believed this; but everything is accounted fair in the game of politics, and they thought it would help their cause if the Associated Press would announce each delegation, on its selection, as for Reed. They appealed to me; but of course I could not misstate the facts, and they took great umbrage. The St. Louis Convention, when it assembled, verified our declarations, for Mr. Reed's vote was insignificant.

The national conventions are our first care. Preparations begin months before they assemble. Rooms are engaged at all the leading hotels, so that Associated Press men may be in touch with every delegation. The plans of the convention hall are examined, and arrangements are made for operating-room and seats. The wires of the association are carried into the building, and a work-room is usually located beneath the platform of the presiding officer. A private passage is cut, connecting this work-room with the reporters' chairs, which are placed directly in front of the stand occupied by speakers, and inclosed by a rail to prevent interference from the surging masses certain to congregate in the neighborhood.

A week before the convention opens, a number of Associated Press men are on the ground to report the assembling of the delegates, to sound them as to their plans and preferences,'and to indicate the trend of the gathering in their despatches as well as they may. The National Committee holds its meeting in advance of the convention, decides upon a roll of members, and names a presiding officer. All this is significant, and is often equivalent to a determination of the party candidates.

Of the convention itself, the Associated Press makes three distinct reports. A reporter sits in the hall and dictates to an operator who sends out bulletins. These follow the events instantly, are necessarily very brief, and are often used by the newspapers to post on bulletin-boards. There is also a graphic running story of the proceedings. This is written by three men, seated together, each writing for ten minutes and then resting twenty. The copy is hastily edited by a fourth man, so that it may harmonize. This report is usually printed by afternoon papers. Finally, there is a verbatim report, which is printed by the large metropolitan dailies. A corps of expert stenographers, who take turns in the work, is employed. As a delegate rises in any part of the hall, one of these stenographers dashes to his side and reports his utterances. He then rushes to the workroom and dictates his notes to a rapid type-writer, while another stenographer replaces him upon the convention floor. The nominating speeches are usually furnished by their authors weeks in advance, and are in type in the newspaper offices awaiting their delivery and release.

The men who report these conventions are drawn from all the principal offices of the Associated Press. Coming from different parts of the country, they are personally acquainted with a large majority of the delegates. There is a close division of labor: certain men are assigned to write bulletins; others to do descriptive work; still others to prepare introductory summaries; a number to watch and report the proceedings of secret committees; and a force of "scouts" to keep in close touch with the party leaders, and learn of projects the instant that they begin to mature. Out of it all comes a service which puts the newspaper reader of the country in instant and constant possession of every developing fact and gives him a pen-picture of every scene. Indeed, he has a better grasp of the situation than if he were present in the convention hall.

When the candidates are named and the platforms adopted the campaign opens, and for several months the Associated Press faces steadily increasing responsibilities. The greatest care is observed to maintain an attitude of strict impartiality, and yet to miss no fact of interest. If a candidate, or one of the great party leaders, makes a "stumping journey," stenographers and descriptive writers must accompany him. While Mr. Bryan was "on tour," it was his practice to speak hurriedly from the rear platform of his train, and instantly to leave for the next appointment. While he was speaking, the Associated Press stenographer was taking notes. When the train started, these notes were dictated to a type-writer, and at the next stopping-point were handed over to a waiting local Associated Press man, who put the speech on the telegraph wires. In the general offices records are kept of the number of words sent out, so that at the end of the campaign the volume of Republican and Democratic speeches reported is expected to balance.

Finally, the work of Election Day is mapped out in advance with scrupulous care, and each correspondent in the country has definite instructions as to the part he is to play. On Election Day brief bulletins on the condition of the weather in every part of the nation, and on the character of the voting, are furnished to the afternoon papers. The moment the polls close, the counting begins. Associated Press men everywhere are gathering precinct returns and hurrying them to county headquarters, where they are hastily added, and the totals for the county on Presidential electors are wired to the State headquarters of the association. The forces of men at these general offices are augmented by the employment of expert accountants and adding-machines from the local banks, and the labor is so subdivided that last year the result of the contest was announced by eight o'clock in the evening, and at midnight a return, virtually accurate, of the majority in every State was presented to the newspapers. It was the first occasion on which the result of an American general election was transmitted to Europe in time to appear in the London morning papers of the day succeeding the election.


If I were not what Mr. Gladstone once called "an old parliamentary hand," if I had not given and taken the buffets of aggressive American journalism for many years, and if Heaven had not blessed me with a certain measure of the saving grace of humor, I think 1 should have been sent to an early grave by the unreasonable and unfair attacks made upon my administration of the Associated Press news service. In the exciting Presidential campaign of 1896, Senator Jones, the Democratic national chairman, openly charged me with favoring the Republicans; while Mr. Hanna, his opponent, was at the point of breaking a long-time personal friendship because he regarded me as distinctly "pro-Bryan." The truth is, both men had lost their balance; neither was capable of a judicial view; each wanted, not an impartial service, but one which would help his side. Fortunately, the candidates preserved a better poise than their lieutenants. At the close of the campaign both Bryan and McKinley wrote me that they were impressed with the impartiality which we had observed.

A former senator of New York controlled a paper at Albany and named one of his secretaries as its editor. Then trouble began to brew. Day after day I was plied with letters charging me with unfairness. Every time we reported a speech of President Roosevelt's I was accused of favoring the Republicans, while the failure to chronicle the result of an insignificant ward caucus in New Jersey was clear evidence that I was inimical to the Democrats. I patiently investigated each complaint, and explained that there were limitations upon the volume of our service; that the utterances of any incumbent of the Presidential office must properly be reported, while the result of a ward caucus must be ignored, if we were to give any heed to their relative news values. Still the young man was not happy, and, when I had done all that reason or courtesy required, I notified the senator, who had been inspiring the criticisms, that "I must decline to walk the floor with his infant any longer." That ended the matter.

During a congressional inquiry, a number of trade-unionists appeared and testified for days in denunciation of the Associated Press, because they conceived it to be unfriendly to their cause. More recently, but with equal injustice, the secretary of the Citizens' Industrial Association has been pelting me with letters charging our association with favoring organized labor.

When we reported the death of the late Pope in a manner befitting his exalted station, a number of Methodist newspapers gravely asserted that I was a Catholic, or controlled by Vatican influences, although, as a matter of fact, my father was a Methodist clergyman and my mother the grandniece of a coadjutor of John Wesley. On the other hand, not long since, when the Associated Press reported the Marquise des Monstiers's renunciation of the Catholic faith, certain Catholic newspapers flew into a rage and asserted that I was an anti-Catholic bigot.

The more frequent criticisms, however, result from want of knowledge of the true mission of the organization. Many persons, unfamiliar with newspaper methods, mistake special telegrams for Associated Press service, and hold us to an undeserved responsibility. Many others, having "axes to grind," and quite willing to pay for the grinding, find it difficult to believe that not only does the association do no grinding, but by the very nature of its methods such grinding is made impossible. The man who would pay the Associated Press for " booming" his project would be throwing his money away. Any man in the service of the association, from the general manager to the humblest employee, who should attempt to "boom '' a project would be instantly discovered, disgraced, and dismissed.

The four years' struggle with the United Press was waged over this principle. Victor F. Lawson of the Chicago "Daily News," Charles W. Knapp of the St. Louis "Republic," Frederick Driscoll of the St. Paul "Pioneer Press," and those associated with them in that contest, deserve the lasting gratitude of the American people for having established, at a vast cost of time, labor, and money, a method of news-gathering and distribution free from a chance of contamination. Seven hundred newspapers, representing every conceivable view of every public question, sit in judgment upon the Associated Press despatches. A representative of each of these papers has a vote in the election of the management. Every editor is jealously watching every line of the report. It must be obvious that any serious departure from an honest and impartial service would arouse a storm of indignation which would overwhelm any administration.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Significance of Mr. Hearst, by Sydney Brooks


By Sydney Brooks

It borders perhaps on unfriendliness to say that Mr. Hearst is typical of America. But he is certainly so far characteristic of his country that none other could have permitted him to become the social problem and the political force he unquestionably is. His career and his power, and the way in which he pursues the one and accumulates and utilizes the other, are salient and revealing precisely because they are abnormal. Just as it often needs an exaggeration to lay bare the heart of a truth, so the essentials of national conditions and tendencies are sometimes most clearly crystallized in their least representative products. Mr. Hearst fulfils with an overwhelming adequacy this function of illumination by distortion. He is the concave mirror of American life, journalism, and politics. Features in the national physiognomy that would otherwise pass unnoticed leap into a scandalizlng prominence under the reflex of his elongations and distensions. He may not be America, but he is undisguisably American; nor, even with the utmost goodwill, can one conceive him as being anything else. Millais was not more assuredly the John Bull of British art, nor the late Mr. Kensit of British theology, than is Mr. Hearst in his papers, his politics, and his influence, a summing-up of much that makes America so peculiarly American.

The achievements of all three bear the stamp of unmitigated nationality. No one could possibly have mistaken Millais for a Frenchman or Kensit for anything but what he was. Each was typical of his milieu to the negative degree of being impossible and unimaginable outside of it. In the same way, while Mr. Hearst, as an embodiment of his country, may be, and no doubt is, a caricature and a grotesque, Americans cannot disown or repudiate him. Unhappily for them, it but too often happens that a caricature is more lifelike than a photo-graph, and that over-emphasis does not obscure realities but heightens them. Mr. Hearst’s father was one of the hardest-headed and most fortunate of the Californian pioneers. Silver mines, copper mines, newspapers, railways, ranches, and, finally, a seat in the United States Senate, he amassed them all. Exploitation was his business, and politics his hobby, and with a fortune of four millions sterling it was a hobby he could afford to prosecute on a big scale. Of all his properties the San Francisco Examiner was the one that probably interested him the least. He had acquired it as part of the necessary equipment of a millionaire with many interests to protect and political ambitions to forward. It did not pay; it was not meant to pay: but it served its purpose as a mouthpiece for the local “magnates,” and it was part of the bargain that carried its proprietor to the Senate.

With that its mission in life was well-nigh over. In another few months Mr. Hearst would probably have unloaded it with the utmost efficiency upon the next millionaire in whose bonnet the political bee was buzzing. It was just at that moment that his son was expelled from Harvard for some mildly mischievous escapade, returned to San Francisco, utterly refused, on the ground that they did not interest him, to be harnessed to the paternal mines and ranches, and asked instead for the gift of the Examiner. It was handed over to him. The Senator was well pleased to find his amiable, indolent son develop a definite purpose, even though it lay in the incomprehensible direction of journalism; he had the curiosity of a great industrial gambler to see what he would make of so curious an enterprise; and he no doubt took it for granted that after playing for a few years with his new toy, the young man would settle down to the business of learning how to preserve, administer, and enlarge the fortune he was to inherit. But the son had other views. Journalism to him was not a parergon but a career. He had sat at the feet of Pulitzer and had studied the methods by which that consummate master of phosphorescent effects had raised the New York World to the unquestioned primacy of the sewer. He determined to be the Pulitzer of the Pacific Coast, and to conduct the Examiner with the keyhole for a point of view, sensationalism for a policy, crime, scandal, and personalities for a specialty, all vested interests for a punching bag, cartoons, illustrations, and comic supplements for embellishments, and circulation for an object. He entirely succeeded.

His father bore the initial expenses, and in return had the gratification of finding the Examiner turned loose among the businesses. characters, and private lives of his friends and associates. Hardly a prominent family escaped; the corporations were flayed, the plutocracy mercilessly ridiculed, and the social life of San Francisco, and especially of its wealthier citizens, was flooded with all the publicity that huge and flaming headlines and cohorts of reportorial eavesdroppers could give it. San Francisco was horrified, but it bought the Examiner; Senator Hearst remonstrated with his son, and to the last never quite reconciled himself to the "new journalism,” but he did not withhold supplies, and in a very few years the enterprise was beyond need of his assistance and earning a handsome profit. He marked, however, his sense of insecurity in his son‘s proceedings by leaving his fortune entirely in the hands of Mrs. Hearst, a lady whose unhappy fate it has been to furnish the son to whom she is devoted with the means of propagating a peculiarly disagreeable type of journalism.

It was about eleven years ago, when he had just turned thirty-three. that Mr. Hearst made up his mind to duplicate in New York the success he had met with in San Francisco. He bought up a disreputable sheet called the Journal, and proceeded to turn it into a rival that would meet and beat the World on the latter’s own ground. He justly argued that to do this he had, first of all, to make the Journal more notorious than the World; and it speaks well for his self-confidence that he did not at once dismiss such an ideal as absolutely unattainable. There is no need to go into the details of the resounding journalistic conflict that followed. Mr. Hearst began by winning over to his side most of the men whom Pulitzer had trained; Pulitzer bought them back again at an increased figure; Hearst finally annexed them with the bait of long contracts and more than ambassadorial salaries. He ransacked the magazines and the weekly papers for the best writers and the best artists; he produced a paper with as much wood pulp in it and as liberally bespattered with ink of every hue as the World, and he sold it for half the price. The fight was long, bitter, and ignoble, but the victory in the end went to the younger man.

He outbid the World at every point; he made it by contrast seem almost respectable. His headlines were longer by whole inches, his sensations more breathlessly acrobatic; if Pulitzer turned on a dozen reporters to unravel a murder mystery Hearst detailed twenty. There was, and is, an enormous amount of real talent and ingenuity in every issue of the Journal, but it was guided in those early days by no principle beyond that of securing a circulation at any cost. Other objects have influenced its policy and its ambitions since then, but its first business was to make itself known and talked of. It succeeded; the dishonor of selling the most papers in and around New York ceased to be Mr. Pulitzer’s; and the veteran practically retired from the contest when he disclaimed for the World the epithet of “yellow” which his rival boldly and openly gloried in. To-day the two papers are scarcely competitors; the World has retained its old footing and influence; and Mr. Hearst has discovered a new and larger class of readers, and invented for their delectation and his own advancement a new type of journalism.

Within the last few years the Journal has multiplied itself in many cities and under many aliases. Mr. Hearst now owns a Continental chain of eight papers published in the leading cities of America, and many weekly and monthly periodicals as well. Through them he daily addresses an audience of probably not less than four million people. All his publications are of the same saffron coloring; all belong emphatically to “the journalism that acts.” One cannot stay for long in any part of the United States without being confronted by the tokens of their activities. Whether it be rescuing a Cuban maiden from the clutches of a General Weyler, or dispatching relief trains to the scene of some great disaster, or distributing free ice in summer and free soup in winter, or taking out an injunction against a Trust, or setting forth with full illustrations a hundred different ways of killing a man, or fomenting a war, Mr. Hearst's papers are always “doing things.” And some of the things are worth doing.

That is a fact which the stupidity of Mr. Hearst’s enemies - and no man has ever been served so well by his foes - has yet to recognize. There is nothing to be said against this journals which in my judgment they do not deserve. But there is something to be said for them which has to be said if the nature of their appeal and of Mr. Hearst’s power is to be understood. While most of the American papers in the big cities are believed to be under the influence of “the money power," Mr. Hearst’s have never failed to flay the rich perverter of public funds and properties and the rich gambler in fraudulent consolidations. They daily explain to the masses how they are being robbed by the Trusts and the concession-hunters, juggled with by the politicians, and betrayed by their elected officers. They unearth the iniquities of a great corporation with the same microscopic diligence that they squander on following up the clues in a murder mystery or collecting or inventing the details of a society scandal. Their motives may be dubious and their methods wholly brazen, but it is undeniable that the public has benefited by many of their achievements.

When Mr. Hearst was running thirteen months ago for the Governorship of New York State no journal opposed him more strongly than Collier’s Weekly. But that admirable periodical which combines alertness with sanity, a perfect balance with perfect fearlessness, doubled the effectiveness of its opposition by admitting to the full Mr. Hearst's services to the community. “it is due to Mr. Hearst more than to any other man," it said, “that the Central and Union Pacific Railroads paid the £24,000,000 they owed the Government. Mr. Hearst secured a model Children’s Hospital for San Francisco, and he built the Greek Theatre of the University of California - one of the most successful classic reproductions in America. Eight years ago, and again this year, his energetic campaigns did a large part of the work of keeping the Ice Trust within bounds in New York. His industrious Law Department put some fetters on the Coal Trust.

He did much of the work of defeating the Ramapo plot, by which New York would have been saddled with a charge of £40,000,000 for water. To the industry and pertinacity of his lawyers New Yorkers owe their ability to get gas for eighty cents a thousand feet, as the law directs, instead of a dollar. In maintaining a legal department which plunges into the limelight with injunctions and mandamuses when corporations are caught trying to sneak under or around a law, he has rendered a service which has been worth millions of dollars to the public.” These are achievements the credit for which no fair-minded opponent can refuse to Mr. Hearst, nor do they make a meagre list. But Mr. Hearst’s own valuation of his public services is pitched in a much higher key. He has not, few American politicians can afford to have, any mock modesty. Not a Bill that he has supported passes, not a movement that he has once advocated succeeds, but Mr. Hearst claims the credit for it. In enormous headlines and with every artifice of capitals, italics, and cartoons his papers daily proclaim, and his four million readers hear and believe, that Hearst has forced a popular measure through a reluctant Congress, or exposed another financial “magnate,” or procured an official inquiry into the workings of some detested Trust, or rescued San Francisco from starvation.

The glorification of Mr. Hearst is, indeed, the first of the many queer enterprises in which his journals engage. His name appears on them all in unavoidable type; the leading articles bear his signature; the news columns “spread” themselves over his doings. No man has ever had at his disposal so vast an engine of publicity, and Mr. Hearst and his advisers are consummately skilled in working it. There were probably few Congressmen who spoke less or were more frequently away from Washington than Mr. Hearst during his four years’ membership of the national legislature. Yet there was none who made himself more conspicuous. Whenever he had a Bill to propose, a Bill drafted by his private attorney, the reporters and special correspondents from all his newspapers would descend upon Washington to “write it up."

Thus the working men had it screamed into them that Hearst had brought forward one Bill for establishing the eight-hour day in the Government arsenals, and another for relieving Trade Unions from their liabilities under the laws against combination, and a third for the national purchase of the telegraph lines, and a fourth for the institution of a parcels post. The farmers were made to realize that Mr. Hearst had introduced a Bill appropriating £10,000,000 to the building of good national roads; and all who had a grievance against the Trusts were enjoined in megaphonic tones to fall in behind the young Congressman who had framed one Bill empowering the Interstate Commerce Commission to fix railway rates and another facilitating and expediting prosecutions under the Anti-Trust Laws. And lest the more conservative elements in the country should be alienated, it was emphasized in a voice of thunder that Mr. Hearst had sought to raise the salaries of the Judges of the Supreme Court from £2,400 to £5,000 a year.

None of these Bills passed or had the remotest chance of passing, but they enabled Mr. Hearst to come before the public as the friend of the people, the champion of labor interests, and the foe of the corporations. Nothing that can add to the attractiveness of these roles is left unshrieked. Mr. Hearst is a generous employer; he pays if anything rather more than the highest rate of Trade Union wages; the salaries received by his staff of writers are probably unique in the history of journalism; all his newspaper properties are conducted on the eight-hour plan. These are the sort of facts that his papers never weary of hurling at the American public. He is the most widely and ingeniously advertised man in the world; his "boom" never slackens; no one’s voice reaches farther than his. The whole machinery at his command is worked to popularize the impression - which is not, I repeat, a wholly baseless one - that while other men are talkers, Mr. Hearst is a door, and that even Mr. Roosevelt, for all his sermonizing and with all the implements of official authority in his hand, has done less to shackle the Trusts and to uphold the rights of Labor than this private citizen working single-handed, on his own initiative and at his own expense.

When I was revisiting the United States some eighteen months ago I found no one, not even Mr. Roosevelt, more talked about than Mr. Hearst. But the talk was mainly a string of speculative interrogations. That he was a power every one, from the President downwards, admitted; some joyfully, some reluctantly, others with a shrug of disgust at the strange whims of democracy. But beyond that elementary acknowledgment everything was chaos and conjecture. I found no one who could tell me with the least assurance of certainty what manner of man Mr. Hearst was; whether he really believed in the policies he advocated, whether he had any ideas or convictions of his own, or whether he was merely a puppet in other and abler men’s hands. I was assured with equal positiveness that Mr. Hearst was the only genuine champion of the Havenots against the Haves, that he was a political mountebank and buffoon, that he was nothing but a notoriety-hunter, that he was a myth, and that his show of power was due to the dexterity of an adroit and supremely capable committee in the background.

No man, of course, who owns newspapers that are published in half-a-dozen cities, scattered over an area of three million square miles, and who is also the proprietor of a million acres of farm and ranch land, and a mine owner into the bargain, can possibly attend in person to the management of all his interests. Mr. Hearst has had the good sense not even to make the attempt. He has all of Mr. Carnegie’s genius for picking out the right man to do his work. Only where Mr. Carnegie capitalized brains and invested them in business, Mr. Hearst has invested them not only in business but in politics as well. He is the paymaster of a small, loyal, and brilliant organization. They do all the work; he takes all the public credit. The chief of this little band is Mr. Arthur Brisbane. It is he who formulates and expounds the Hearst creed in the editorial columns of the New York Evening Journal. His father was one of the most ardent of the Brook Farm fraternity, from which he separated because he could not engraft upon it the doctrines of Fourier.

The son, cosmopolitanly educated, with many of the attributes of a student and a scholar, has inherited his father’s Socialistic leanings. He has at all events an attractive and more or less definite creed of sympathy with the oppressed, the disinherited, the “less fortunate," as he is fond of calling them. He is a man of wide reading and a keen, open, and reflective mind; he writes with an unsurpassable crispness and lucidity; and he has invented a sharp staccato style which, when set off with a coruscation of all known typographical devices, has brought him a wider audience than any writer or preacher has had before. Always fresh and pyrotechnical, master of the telling phrase and the plausible argument, and veiling the dexterous half-truth beneath a drapery of buoyant and “popular” philosophy or sentiments, Mr. Brisbane has every qualification that an insinuating propagandist of discontent should have.

The leading articles that have made Mr. Hearst a household name among the laboring classes have all been written by Mr. Brisbane. He supplies the Hearst movement with its intellectual dynamics; Mr. Carvalho attends to the business of making it pay. Thirty years‘ experience of newspaper offices, and even more than the average American‘s instinct for organization, have put Mr. Carvalho in complete possession of all the details of advertising, circulation, distribution, and mechanical production. He is the business manager of all the Hearst newspaper properties, and in forwarding their development he shows none of that objection to Trust methods which animates Mr. Brisbane’s editorials. The belief is very common in America that, thanks to Mr. Carvalho's astuteness, Mr. Hearst’s political campaigns are practically self-supporting. They pay their way in the increased circulation of his journals. Two more of Mr. Hearst’s lieutenants deserve a passing word. One of them is Mr. Clarence Shearn, who takes charge of Mr. Hearst’s legal interests, drafts the Bills that Mr. Hearst used to introduce into Congress, starts proceedings every other month or so - always, of course, in Mr. Hearst’s name - against this or that Trust, and has the yet more arduous task of looking through Mr. Hearst’s New York papers before they go to press and deleting the libels. The other is Mr. Max Ihmsen, the political manager, whose business it is to found Hearst clubs, create Hearst sentiment, enrol Hearst delegates, conduct negotiations with rival bosses, and see to it that conventions do what is expected of them. Mr. Ihmsen was the Hearst candidate for Sheriff in the election three weeks ago, but suffered defeat.

These are the men who, working behind the scenes, without any observable friction, and with a complete suppression of personal ambitious - a collection of Mr. Brisbane‘s articles was published under the title of Hearst Editorials - have made the Hearst movement a reality. It throws a wholly new light on the possibiltles of electioneering to watch them working together in the heat of a campaign. There is not a device for attracting votes that they do not know and practise. Mr. Hearst’s cablegram to The Times, with its rowdy appeal to Irish-American and German-American sympathies, by no means gave the full measure of their ingenuity. The Pope has been repeatedly pressed into Mr. Hearst’s service; one of their favorite “campaign documents” is a portrait of His Holiness inscribed with a message of thanks and a pontifical blessing to Mr. Hearst for the “relief” he sent after the eruption of Vesuvius. The Jews on the East Side are taught to look upon Mr. Hearst as the foremost American champion of their Russian co-religionists.

The many services Mr. Hearst has rendered to the community, the many more he claims to have rendered, are made the themes of daily panegyrics. For each class and for each nationality a special ground of appeal is prepared. The allegations regarding Mr. Hearst’s life before his marriage are answered by flooding the constituencies with portraits of his wife and son, and by making Bishop Potter, who performed the marriage ceremony, appear in the light of a witness to his character. The Trade Union vote is angled for by the conclusive argument that Mr. Hearst pays more than Trade Union wages. For the farmers there is a separate journal, in which Mr. Hearst chiefly figures as the sympathetic owner of a million acres. Business, politics, philanthropy, domesticity, an infinity of brass bands, fireworks, processions, and all the other aids to reflection with which Americans conduct their political campaigns, the Brisbane editorials, and Mr. Ihmsen‘s genius for the tactics which his countrymen glorify under the name of politics, are all enrolled in the Hearst movement.

But there is more in it than pantomime and pandemonium. What gives Mr. Hearst his ultimate power is that he has used the resources of an unlimited publicity to make himself and his propaganda the rallying point for disaffection and unrest. His journals make it their consistent policy to preach discontent, to side always with “the people,” and to take the part of Labor against Capital. They used to set no bounds to the violence of their attack. Mr. McKinley and Mr. Hanna were assailed and caricatured with an unbridled vehemence and maliciousness that provoked a fierce, though only a brief, reaction after the President’s assassination. Mr. Hearst bowed to the storm, covered the stricken President with sanctimonious eulogies, and did not until the day after the funeral attempt to defend himself. "The sum of the Journal‘s offences," it was then announced, “is that it has fought for the people, and against class privilege, and class pride and class greed and class heartlessness with more and varied weapons, with more force and talent and enthusiasm, than any other newspaper in the country.”

That was and is a perfectly true statement. The Hearst newspapers, though they have moderated their methods, have not changed their policy; and it is a policy which finds an immense justification in the conditions of American life and politics. No one can visit the United States these days without becoming conscious of a pervasive social unrest. The people are beginning to think. They have turned away, as Mr. H. G. Wells rightly discerned, “from all the heady self-satisfaction of the nineteenth century." and have commenced “a process of heart-searching quite unparalleled in history." They are questioning themselves and their future and their institutions with an open-mindedness that a decade ago would have seemed well-nigh treasonable. They are beginning to wonder whether the great experiment is after all so great as it once appeared; or, rather, they are beginning to see that it is an experiment merely. Familiar ideals, established political and social systems, are being brought as never before to the touchstone of fact.

The inadequacies of an eighteenth-century Constitution in the face of twentieth-century problems are daily impressing themselves for the national comprehension. Economic and industrial developments, it is felt, have taken on an intricacy and a varied sweep that are slowly bringing the Constitution to a confusion of helplessness. More and more, people are asking themselves whether the United States can any longer be called a democracy. More and more, people are coming to see that under the forms of popular self-government, political equality has become the sport of "bosses" and economic equality the jest of a voracious plutocracy. The Courts to an alarming degree are losing the confidence of the masses; the Senate has already lost it. The old parties, the old catchwords are ceasing to attract. The people perceive their emptiness and are palpably tiring of them. Republicans and Democrats, with their obsolete mummeries, will soon mean less than nothing to a nation that is girding itself to wrest its liberties from the grip of organized wealth.

A wave of social protest is sweeping across the country, over all sections, and with an utter heedlessness of the traditional party divisions. Federated Labor, fired by the example of England, is abandoning its timid non-partisanship and preparing to plunge into politics as a class with distinct interests of its own to serve. In city, State, and nation there is now but one issue - the struggle between equality and privilege. Great masses of Americans are growing up with an angry feeling that they have been cheated out of their inheritance. They see, or think they see, that the millionaire and the boss rule and own America; that together they control all the functions of government; that the Courts and the ballot-box are merely instruments of their power and the Constitution a handmaid to their iniquities; that all legislation is conceived in their interests, drafted and voted by their henchmen; and that, as a consequence, where there is one law for the protection of human life there are a thousand for the protection of property. This may be a mere nightmare vision of America, but it is one that hundreds of thousands believe in as a waking reality.

Against such conditions Hearstism is the loudest and the most popular protest. With more point and passion than any other leader, Mr. Hearst has attacked the industrialization of American politics, has insisted that the political masters of the country are its captains of industry. He has proclaimed with strident iteration that the money power is in effect a conspiracy against the commonweal, and the disclosures of the past few years in the management or the insurance companies, the railways, the Chicago canning factories, the New York traction companies, and in the banking corporations, have abundantly justified him. He has incessantly shrieked that “the people" were being robbed by their rulers, and he is now proved right. Employing all the resources of a vicious journalism to quicken the American proletariat into an uprising against the forces of bossism and capital, he has made himself believed in as the forerunner of the new American revolution.

It is not only a political party, but a social class that he seeks to found, to rouse to consciousness and to lead. From the sinister alliance of debased politics with industrial monopoly he points to what not only he but many millions of Americans believe to be the only road of escape - the public ownership of public utilities. When he declares that “the great problem of the hour is to do away with corporation control of the Government," and when he declares that control to rest “mainly upon our system of partisan politics directed by Boss rule and subject to Trust ownership,” there may be many Americans who will dispute Mr. Hearst’s fitness to apply the remedy, but there are few with sufficient hardihood to deny the accuracy of his diagnosis. He profits enormously by the ferocious hostility of the corporations that have debauched American politics, nor is it only the poor and the ignorant who subscribe to his programme.

I was surprised, when in America last year, to find how many of the younger men he had won over to his side - men who were not at all inclined to sympathize with “yellow” journalism, but who were sick of the old parties, repelled by the universality of graft, and who, while deploring Mr. Hearst’s methods, saw in his programme, and in his alone, a chance of real political regeneration. The main plank in that programme is, as I have said, the public ownership of public utilities; but it contains other measures, such as ballot reform, direct nominations, and the election of United States Senators by the people instead or by the State legislatures. that also commend themselves to a great body of sensible and non-partisan opinion.

Mr. Hearst’s political career has been sensational even for a land where politics are always turning somersaults. One cannot begin to appraise it aright until one grasps the fact that for a large section of the masses he symbolizes not only a detestation of the plutocracy, but also that weariness with the regular parties which is one of the most baffling phenomena in American politics. That Republicans and Democrats are slowly transforming themselves in policy and spirit, though not in name, into Conservatives and Radicals seems to me indisputable. Mr. Hearst is a Radical, and it is to all Radicals, whether they call themselves Democrats or Republicans, that he makes his appeal. By affiliation a Democrat, it is on the Democratic Party that he will first of all seek to impose himself and his programme; but the ultimate aim of his somewhat bewildering tactics, if I understand them aright, is to gather round him in every State in the Union such a body of followers as will enable him to hold the balance of power.

In the Presidential Election of 1904 be secured over two hundred delegates at the National Democratic Convention. In 1905 he ran for the Mayoralty of New York on an independent ticket, and fought Tammany to a standstill. In 1906 he was in alliance with Tammany, and accepted by the Democrats of New York State as their official candidate for the Governorship. In 1907 he cut loose from his allies of the previous year, and “fused” with the Republicans, who twelve months before had smothered him with abuse. In 1908 he will probably appear before the National Democratic Convention with a sufficient number of delegates to influence and perhaps control the party nominations for the Presidency. That this “in and out form” puts Mr. Hearst in a very dubious light and heavily discounts his sincerity is, of course, self evident; but it is at the same time a remarkable testimony to the reality of his power that he should have succccded in forcing himself upon both parties in turn.

His political methods, like his journalistic, are wholly brazen, but they seem to be effective, and the prophets who were declaring three weeks ago that Mr. Hearst was finally done for little know their man or the game he is playing. Mr. Hearst, in my opinion, will continue to be an incalculable and profoundly disturbing influence in American politics; and it is not yet certain that he may not some day be the supreme influence. No force that can be brought against him appears capable of doing more than defeat him; it cannot crush and annihilate him. Even his unsavory tactics and the manifold contradictions of his position do not alienate his following. Despite the fact that he is the professed foe of corporations, his own organization, the Independence League, is a corporation not merely in name but in law. It is registered like any other stock company, and it can take no action whatever without the consent of a board of directors who, of course, are Mr. Hearst‘s personal satellites.

Anomalies such as these make people question Hearst’s honesty. The truth is, I believe, that having had a certain creed expounded in his name every morning and evening in the year for the past eleven years, and perceiving that this creed contains a degree of truth and falls in with his personal ambitions, Mr. Hearst has come to believe in it, and to take it seriously, but not by any means fanatically. Beyond that I should not care to venture any opinion as to the depths of Mr. Hearst’s political convictions. He impressed me when I came across him as a man very difficult to know. That he is as different as possible from his papers goes without saying; nobody could he like them and be a human being.

They are blatant, and he in dress, appearance, and manner is impeccably quiet, measured, and decorous. He struck me as a man of power and a man of sense, with a certain dry wit about him and a pleasantly detached and impersonal way of speaking. He stands six feet two in height, is broad-shouldered, deep of chest, huge-fisted, deliberate, but assured in all his movements. But for an excess of paleness and smoothness in his skin one might take him for an athlete. He does not look his forty-four years. The face has indubitable strength. The long and powerful jaw and the lines round his firmly clenched mouth tell of a capacity for long concentration, and the eyes, large, steady, and luminously blue, emphasize by their directness the effect of resolution.

In more ways than his quiet voice and unhurried, considering air, Mr. Hearst is somewhat of a surprise. He neither smokes nor drinks; he never speculates; he sold the racehorses he inherited from his father, and is never seen on a race track; yachting, dancing, cards, the Newport life, have not the smallest attraction for him; for a multi-milllonaire he has scarcely any friends among the rich, and to “Society” he is wholly indifferent; he lives in an unpretentious house in an unfashionable quarter, and outside his family, his politics, and his papers, appears to have no interests whatever. To guage his future is impossible. To watch it will be at least an experience in a novel and somewhat sinister form of political burlesque.

Sydney Brooks.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Hearst had "determination to supersede the journalism that chronicles"

What is visible to all men is that a young man of enormous energy and great journalistic instinct has dedicated a fortune as great as that of Monte Christo to the creation of a newspaper which, instead of confining itself to the function of chronicling other men’s deeds, boldly asserts its determination to supersede the journalism that chronicles by the journalism that acts. Other newspapers may write about things. The Journal is determined to do them.

William Thomas Stead from "A Romance of the Pearl of the Antilles"

Stead wrote this in reference to William Randolph Hearst's and Karl Decker's "daring" and successful jailbreak of a Cuban captive - Evangelina Cisneros.

The importance of this story is properly put into context by none other than Stead himself:

Stanley’s commission after all was one of exploration, and came easily within what had always been regarded as a legitimate field of journalistic enterprise; but a commission to break into a gaol, and carry off a captive who was under arrest by the orders of the Government of a city with which the Americans were at peace, marks a development fraught with many possibilities, some of which are by no means calculated to minister to the repose of nations.

What is interesting is that Stead does not characterize the breaking from jail of Cisneros as an illegitimate field of journalistic enterprise. He praises it up and down. Its daring, its spectacular, its brilliant! All of these key words are used in the first few paragraphs, along with a few others.

There is also an ambiguity to the article: Did Decker rescue Cisneros? Or is Hearst her true rescuer? Sure, Decker was the guy on the ground. But Hearst financed it. Hearst told him to go. Look at the first page of the article:

"A CUBAN HEROINE AND HER RESCUER" shouts the headline, and the first picture you see is of William Randolph Hearst. Seems logical then that Stead is characterizing Hearst as the rescuer.

Everything has a turning point. In the annals of activist journalism, Hearst's/Decker's rescue of Evangelina Cisneros is a very important turning point.

This is where the journalism that chronicles was superseded by the journalism that acts.

Furthermore, this highlights a great misnomer about so called Yellow Journalism. We have been told for far too long that the yellows simply made sensationalized headlines to sell more papers and increase their profits. That's certainly partially true - its not untrue. But it's not "the rest of the story".

Plenty of agenda goes into politically-based news reporting, but keep this in mind: This story of Evangelina Cisneros is a human interest story. Yet the intent and agenda runs deep. So next time you see a so called "human interest story", ask yourself this:

"What is the writer's agenda behind this story?"

A Romance of the Pearl of the Antilles, by William Thomas Stead



By William Thomas Stead

FEW things that happened last month are more worthy of chronicling than the brilliantly successful achievement of Karl Decker in rescuing the Cuban heroine, Miss Evangelina Cisneros, from the State prison of Havana.


Apart altogether from the interest which belongs to it as an episode which recalls the daring enterprises of the adventurers of the Middle Ages, the incident marks a significant phase in the evolution of the journalistic profession. Newspaper reporters have had many assignments of various kinds, but since Stanley was commissioned to go and find Livingstone, who was lost in the centre of the Dark Continent, there has been nothing quite so sensational as the commission which Mr. Hearst of the New York Journal gave to Mr. Karl Decker to go and rescue Evangelina Cisneros from the Spanish prison in which she had been confined for many months. Stanley’s commission after all was one of exploration, and came easily within what had always been regarded as a legitimate field of journalistic enterprise; but a commission to break into a gaol, and carry off a captive who was under arrest by the orders of the Government of a city with which the Americans were at peace, marks a development fraught with many possibilities, some of which are by no means calculated to minister to the repose of nations.

On the whole, I am disposed to regard the chief importance of the story as lying in the magnificent advertisement which it has afforded the New York Journal and its spirited proprietor, Mr. W. R. Hearst. I say this in no spirit of sarcasm. There are great possibilities latent in that young man, and nothing is more important than to take note betimes of a personality which may be a decisive factor in the determining of many great issues, both internal and international. Whether this is so or not, depends upon a factor upon which we have us yet no trustworthy data to pronounce judgment.

What is visible to all men is that a young man of enormous energy and great journalistic instinct has dedicated a fortune as great as that of Monte Christo to the creation of a newspaper which, instead of confining itself to the function of chronicling other men’s deeds, boldly asserts its determination to supersede the journalism that chronicles by the journalism that acts. Other newspapers may write about things. The Journal is determined to do them. It has been doing a good many things-some of them extremely well, others not so well. I cannot for a moment profess to feel any unqualified admiration for many of the manifestations of the exuberant vitality of this phenomenal editor. But that is neither here nor there. The important fact is that here is a man with one great newspaper in San Francisco and another greater newspaper in New York, who only failed by a mere fluke from having another great newspaper in Chicago; who has ample means to give effect to the most extravagant journalistic ambitions; who is in the very prime of manhood, and who, so far, is entirely untrammelled by any allegiance to any party or sect or faction in the world.

In his ambition to be a journalist who does things, the release of Evangelina Cisneros may be counted as his first great international success. It deserves due recognition as a hint foreshadowing what this newest of new journalists may feel compelled to do hereafter. I am naturally a very sympathetic observer of this evolution. What Mr. Hearst is doing reminds me at every turn of what we tried to do in the old Pall Mall days, when our ambitions were quite as vast, but our means, alas! were much more limited. I was no multi-millionaire like Mr. Hearst, neither did I bestride a continent like a colossus, with one foot on the Pacific and the other on the Atlantic. But I realised, and in some fashion succeeded in impressing upon the public mind, a conception of what Matthew Arnold called "The New Journalism" which has never been entirely effaced - not even by the gross and unworthy caricatures of some new journalists of these latter days. Having said so much by way of preamble, I will now proceed to tell as briefly as possible the story of this new Evangeline.


Evangelina Cisneros is a young and beautiful girl, of Spanish descent, of Cuban birth, whose father took part in the attempt made by the Cuban patriots to throw off the Spanish yoke, and whose uncle was at one time President of the nascent Republic of Cuba. Like many another revolutionist he fell into the hands of the Government he was trying to upset, and by them was promptly consigned to gaol. There he remained for some time, suffering the usual indignities meted out to captive revolutionists by this Spanish Government. His daughter, full of distress at the sufferings of her father, and fear that the rigours of the confinement from which he was suffering might endanger his life, made her way to the officer, Colonel Berriz, and implored him to consent to her father’s release. It has been the fate of Spain at crises in her destiny to have the course of her fate decided by the lawless passions of her rulers. One of the most familiar stories in European history tells how the Moors were brought into Spain as the result of Don Roderick's lawless passion for the daughter of Count Julian, and it will not be at all surprising if, at the close of the nineteenth century, the Pearl of the Antilles should be wrenched from the heirs of Ferdinand and Isabella because her representative in Cuba cast wanton eyes upon a girl as beautiful but more fortunate than Don Roderick's mistress. Berriz was a soldier and a Spaniard. He was dealing with the daughter of a rebel, and he made to her one of these proposals which tradition associates with the worst period of English history, when the bloody assizes followed in the wake of Monmouth's rebellion.

Miss Cisneros wrote her own story of her life in her own simple language after her rescue. It appeared - in translation of course - in the Sunday Journal of October 17. She begins :-

It is not good that the people say I am a girl. I am not a girl; I am a woman. I am nineteen years old.

Her mother died before she can remember, and from childhood she kept house for her father. One day her father came home from the sugar plantation, and sat a long time at the table and did not speak-

All in a moment he pushed away his plate, jumped up from the table, and he took me by the shoulder, he looked me straight in the eyes, and he said, "My little girl, I am going to fight for Cuba." And then I cried, and I think he cried a little too. and I kissed him and told him that I was glad. I said, "Father, I will go with you." Well, I went with him.

"I saw many things," she says, "that make me feel sick now when I dream of them at night. Once I sat half the night by a wounded man who prayed me to kill him, and I could not kill him, and I must wait for daylight, and when the sun rose he died alone while I was gone to get him a drink of water." Her father was betrayed by a spy and taken prisoner. He was very ill when confined in the Cabanas, and after much petitioning on her part General Campos removed him to the Isle of Pines, where the prisoners have the freedom of the island and can be joined by their relatives. Evangelina with her little sister Carmen followed her father to the island. It was there where she met the brute Berriz. She tells her painful story very delicately :-

One day my sister and I went out for a walk along the shore of the island. We s AW five or six men coming on horseback. They were soldiers. The one who seemed to be the chief among them, from the clothes he were, stopped his horse a little and looked at me. My sister and I were afraid, and we hurried home.

The next time I went out again we met the same man Again he stopped his horse, and, again I was afraid. From that day I could never go out but that this man followed me. It was Jose Berriz, the Military Governor of the island. He tried to speak to me many times, but I was always afraid and did not listen. He was a little yellow man with green eyes, green like the tide water when it is not clean and when the sun shines on it. He had a wife and children in Spain.

One day the soldiers came to our house and took my father away. My father had done nothing that he should be arrested, and we were very much afraid. We did not know what they were going to do with him. They would not let him speak, and they would not answer us when we spoke to them. I took my sister and went up to the Governor and asked him to tell me what they were going to do to my father. He was very kind. He made me to sit down, and he told me to have no fear, that my father should come to no harm, and that in a few days I should come again, and he would tell me that my father was free. I went again in a few days, when he did not tell me that my father was free. He told me that he would set him free if I wished it.

I cannot write all that he said to me. I went home and I cried all night, but I did not go again to the Governor‘s house to ask for my father's freedom.

One night when she was alone in the house, Berriz came and knocked at the door. She lay still terrified and did not move. He went away. Next day she received a warning that the Governor intended to return at night :-

That night there were friends of mine watching the house. The Governor came. He attempted to force his way into the house; I screamed, and my friends rushed out and caught him. Then the soldiers came and we were all arrested.

They took me to the Recojidas (a prison in Havana). The Recojidas is a prison for women. I would rather be dead and in my grave, with the cross at my head and a stone at my feet, than to be for one day in that place again. The day, it was not the day, that made me wish to die.

Her account of her experiences in the public prison, where she was for some time the only white Woman amidst the riff‘raff’ of the negro prostitutes in gaol is very vivid and very fearful. The women were huddled together like wild animals in a pen. The roughs from the streets would come and mock them and chaff the unfortunates, blowing their tobacco smoke through the bars, and gloating over the prospect of her execution. Being in prison, she remarks simply, does not make one feel like being good :—

But the day I could get through somehow. I was angry sometimes, and that helped me to live; but at night, when everything was still and I was shut up in that pen, with those awful women, something used to rise up in my throat and choke me, and I had to say my prayers over and over again to keep from tearing my throat open.

At last Mrs. Lee, the American Consul’s wife, came to see her :—

She could not s esk Spanish to me, and I could not speak English to her, ut we held each other by the hands, and after that my throat did not feel so tight at night.

After this her lot was not so hideously intolerable. Another white woman was imprisoned in the same cell, and she learnt to sympathise even with the poor degraded creatures who surrounded her :—

I used to write letters for some of the women in the prison; most of them could not read and write. I did not like any of those women at first, and I never could bear to hear them talk, but when I had written the letters for them I began to feel a little different. Every one of them had some one that she loved and prayed for.


The story of Miss Cisneros, eloquently told in the columns of the newspaper press of America, naturally excited widespread sympathy. Nothing that the Spaniards had done, not even the merciless massacres of Weyler, did so much to inflame the popular indignation. If, as seems not improbable, the United States should be involved in war with Spain, this result will probably be due more to the story of Evangelina Cisneros than to all the unnumbered tragedies of a smaller nature which found no chronicler. When every one was cursing the butchers of the Antilles, it occurred to Mr. Hearst, or to some of the staff imbued with his spirit, that it would be a thousand pities if this widespread indignation were to be allowed to evaporate in execration. He set to work to get up a memorial to the Queen of Spain, pleading for the release of the Cuban heroine. The idea, once mooted, was taken up with vigour. All the leading women in America signed it, beginning with the President‘s mother, whose example was followed by most of the wives of the Ministers and all the women who took an intelligent interest in public affairs. Day after day the Journal published long lists of the names of the foremost citizens, and when at last the memorial was ready for presentation there were fifteen thousand names in that roll call of honour. There was lacking hardly one of the women who had distinguished themselves in any branch of public service, or who were the mothers, wives, or sisters of any distinguished American public man.

But Mr. Hearst was not satisfied with merely organising the protest of American womanhood. His ambition crossed the Atlantic, and he directed his representative in London, Mr. Murphy, to make the Journal offices in 80, Fleet Street, E.C., the centre of an organisation for collecting the signatures of the representative British women to the following memorial :-


Her Most Gracious Majesty the Queen Regent of Spain.

We the undersigned Englishwomen, humbly petition Your Majesty on behalf of


upon whom we learn that sentence of twenty years’ penal servitude may be passed by Your Majesty’s General in Cuba.

We would add our prayers to those which have already reached you that you will graciously exercise your royal power to prevent this sentence from being confirmed.

We would recall to Your Majesty's mind the extreme youth and inexperience of this unhappy girl.

We would venture to remind Your Majesty that such a sentence carried out on a young lady of culture and refinement means her utter ruin, physically, socially, and morally. We do not believe that Your Majesty’s clemency will be misplaced in saving this girl only eighteen years of age from such a fate.

We ask you, Gracious Lady, to consider favourably our petition, which is entirely unbiassed by any political considerations.

And your petitioners will ever pray, etc.

It was not desired to obtain signatures in great numbers, but rather to obtain the names of those who were connected in an official capacity with religious and philanthropic societies. Although the number of the names appended to this memorial did not exceed two hundred, they represent organisations which have a total membership of more than two hundred thousand. The Duchess of Westminster, Lady Henry Somerset, Lady Rothschild, the Countess of Carlisle and others, took the keenest interest in the memorial. Lady Henry Somerset's signature was the first affixed to it. Mrs. Chant’s the last. The memorial was a very elaborate affair, three feet long by two feet wide, illuminated in gold, silver, blue and orange, on the thickest vellum, with lettering in English church text. It was sent to our ambassador at Madrid, but was returned in order that it might be forwarded in due course by the Spanish Ambassador in London. Mrs. Ormiston Chant and Marie Corelli - a curious combination - seem to have divided between them the task of rousing public opinion on the subject. Mrs. Chant especially impressed the Journal's representative with the energy, industry and skill with which she co-operated with him in securing this expression of British opinion on behalf of the imprisoned girl. The petition was notable as being the first time in which English women ever memorialised a foreign potentate as women. There have been memorials before signed by both men and women, but this was the first exclusive female memorial— an appeal by women to a woman on behalf of a woman.

The restless energy of the Journal next approached the Pope, and succeeded in securing from his Holiness an expression of sympathy with the imprisoned girl. The Queen of Spain received the memorial, and was understood to have expressed herself as being desirous that no harm should come to Evangelina. She suggested her removal to a convent. To undo the prison bars and let the captive go free was an exercise of the royal prerogative which her Majesty or her Majesty’s advisers did not feel was justified under the circumstances.

Days passed, weeks rolled by, and still Evangelina remained in gaol, herded with coloured prostitutes, exposed daily to the taunts and menaces of the vile creatures who daily gloated over the prospect of seeing the fair young creature taken out and shot, a fate which has befallen many another Cuban who had given much less cause for offence to the Spanish tyrant. Then Mr. Hearst lost patience. The American memorial had failed, the English memorial had failed, the Pope's benevolent desires were equally inoperative. He determined that something must be done. He therefore told on a young married man, on his staff, of the name of Karl Decker, and instructed him to go to Havana and liberate Miss Cisneros. Decker had carte blanche as to the means which he was to employ, and the unlimited money with which he had to execute orders.


How he executed his instructions, and how he snatched Evangelina Cisneros from the dungeon of her gaoler in the very midst of a city crowded with Spanish troops, and conveyed her safely to New York, must be told in his own language, into which I have interwoven the account given by Miss Cisneros herself.

I came here three weeks ago, having been told by the editor of the Journal to go to Cuba and rescue from her prison Miss Cisneros, the niece of the former President of the Cuban Republic, a tenderly reared girl, descended from one of the best families in the island, and herself a martyr to the unsatisfied desires of a beast in Spanish uniform.

I arrived at Cienfuegos late in September, telegraphed to a known and tried man in Santiago de Cuba to meet me in Havana, and then went to Santa Clara, where I picked up a second man, known to be as gritty as Sahara, and then proceeded to Havana. Here I remained in almost absolute concealment, so as to avoid the spies that dog one’s steps wherever one may go and make impossible any clever work of this kind. Both the men who accompanied me, Joseph Hernandon and Harrison Mallory, pursued the same course, and remained quiet until all plans had been completed.

The fact that Miss Cisneros was incomunicado made the attempt seem at first beyond the possibility of success, but we finally, through Hernandon, who was born on the island and speaks Spanish like a native, succeeded in sending a note to her through an old negress, who called upon one of her friends in the prison.


A centen got this note through two hands to Miss Cisneros, and three centens later got to her a package of drugged sweets. Having established communication with her, we began work without losing a day.

The rest of the escape has already been told, and the Journal has kept its word to the one hundred and fifty thousand Women of America who had urged the poor girl's liberation.

The Casa de Recojidas is located in the lowest quarters of Havana, and is surrounded by a huddle of squalid huts occupied by negroes and Chinamen and rocking to heaven by day and night. A single alley, perhaps twenty feet in length, zigzags around two sides of the building, opening off in front of the main entrance.

Compostela Street runs along the rear of the building north and south, and from this leads off westwardly Sigua Street, by which dignified name is known the alley running along the south side of Recojidas. Turning at right angles to the north, the alley tipsily forgets its name and loses record on the map of Havana. At the north end of the building and just in front of the big door of the prison the filthy lane right angles again, becomes O'Farrill Street and strikes straight forward, as though anxious to leave the gaol as soon as possible. It ends at Egido Street, opposite the Havana arsenal.

This was the scene of our operations. There are single rows of houses in the alley facing the side and front of the gaol, and a double row on both sides of O'Farrill Street.


A dozen times in half as many hours I passed through this crooked alley trying to find the solution of a problem that would not be solved. Recojidas was apparently inaccessible; its huge, thick walls towered far in the air, topped by a high, thick parapet. The only windows to be seen from the alley were about thirty-tive feet from the ground, and were protected, as are all windows in Cuba, by massive iron bars.

Although not known to any of us at that time, as it was invisible from the street, there was a window opening from the second story on an azotea, or flat roof, over lower rooms in the front of the building. Through this window the escape of Miss Cisneros was finally effected, but it was not until a week after our survey that any suggestion looking to the use of this window was made.

For the first week we scanned and rescanned the outer Walls, suggesting a dozen plans, all equally worthless. A daylight attempt was considered, and plans were made to get Miss Cisneros to the barred door opening into a small court just off the main entrance.

Don Jose, the alcalde, was then to be lured outside the door, lured further, into a state of temporary unconsciousness, and our end accomplished by a wild dash for liberty. This scheme would probably have worked but for the fact that Miss Cisneros was incomunicado, and was not permitted to receive visitors, or even to come into the Sala de Justicia on the inner side of the door.

The fact that the Havana arsenal, always under a strong guard, stretched its long front across the end of O‘Farrill Street on the other side of Egido Street, and that the barracks of a company of the Orden Publicos was located just back of Recojidas on Compostela Street. made this plan decidedly uncertain as to results. It was abandoned.

As it appeared at this time absolutely impossible to either get into the gaol ourselves or to get Miss Cisneros out, it was considered to have become a case of untar los manos, and a sturdy attempt was made to reach some of the guards or keepers with bribes, but nothing was effected. Finally, when it appeared as if the only possible way to secure the escape of the beautiful Cuban would be to dynamite a part of the building, a note was smuggled in to her as a last resort, asking if she could make any suggestion that could help us.


In answer she sent the following message, in Spanish, of course :- "My plan is the following. To escape by the roof with the aid of a rope, descending by the front of the house at a given hour and signal. For this I require acid, to destroy the bars of the windows, and opium or morphine, so as to set to sleep my companions. The bust way to use it is in sweets, and thus I can also set to sleep the vigilants.

"Three of you come and stand at the corners: a lighted cigar will be the signal of alarm, for which I may have to delay, and a white handkerchief will be the agreed signal by which I can safely descend. I will only bring with me the necessary clothes tied around my waist. This is my plan; let me know if it is convenient."


Accompanying this was a plan drawn by herself showing the exact location of the window referred to. It was at the end of a second story apartment running along Sigua Street on the side of the prison, but not extending clear to its front. The azotea, or flat roof, on which it opens was about twenty feet wide, and a high parapet along the front of the building hid this window from sight in the street.

No time was lost in acting on her suggestion. The idea of eating through an iron bar with acid was dismissed, and the question then naturally presented itself as to how the bars of the window could be cut so as to permit her to crawl through. The height of the building also precluded the idea of letting her attempt to come down by herself. Her plan was to use the rope on the flag-staff.

Consequently it became absolutely necessary for us to gain access to the notes. if we were to succeed. To do this, it became immediately apparent, would necessitate the use of a house in the crooked little alley running around the gaol. By the rarest good fortune I found on my next visit to the vicinity a vacant house immediately adjoining the gaol on the north side of O’Farrill Street.


By this time No. 1, O'Farrill Street is better known and more famous in Havana than the palace itself. By the end of the next day the house was in our possession. As La Lucha naively remarks to-day :- "The lessees could find no one to become responsible for them, so paid two months in advance."

Our gold pieces made this O'Farrill palace ours for the space of two months should we care to occupy it that long. Next day the deal was closed. A colored Habanero was sent to the house to whitewash, and besides the lime and brush he carried a light ladder about twelve feet long. The possession of this ladder was all that brought him on the scene. When he went away in the evening he forgot it and it remained in the house.

Last Tuesday night we went into the squalid little den at No. 1, fully prepared, as we believed, for all possible contingencies.


Having the key, I went first and reached and entered the house without being noticed. Hernandon and Mallory followed about an hour later, but were so unfortunate as to find the door of No. 3, the adjoining house, standing open, with two of the occupants gaping idly at the moon, waiting for the arrival of the last of their household. As our two men passed them and disappeared into the house they became very much alarmed, seeming to imagine the visit of the strange men to the house next door foreboded some pending calamity to themselves.

Although it was now 12.30, the occupants of No. 3 remained awake, busying themselves at first with barricading themselves in. Finally, however, the tardy member of that household arrived and with much noise and clamor they barred themselves in and went to bed.

It was fully 1.30 o’clock before the noises of the neighbourhood quieted down and the evil place fell into a semblance of repose. At this time the moon was high in the heavens, and as bright as the midday sun. Down towards the corner of the front of the Recojidas a large gas-lighted bracket against the side of one of the houses made visible the smallest object in the dirty thoroughfare.


Notwithstanding these disadvantages, however, we mounted the roof and proceeded to business. The front of Recojidas lay at right angles to our house, but the prison building ran back of our building so that the walls were together. At this point, however, the guard-wall of the Recojidas rose sheer twenty feet above our heads and was protected on the top by a thick sprinkling of broken glass bottles.

This guard-wall extended out from the front of our wall to a point ten or twelve feet distant, where it joined the azotea. To reach this latter point, therefore, it was necessary to throw the ladder diagonally across the right angle separating our roof from the azotea. This was the most ticklish part of the business, as the ladder was frail and thrillingly short.

Finally the ladder was in position and the trip across began. No man engaged in that enterprise that night will ever forget that twelve foot walk across that sagging, decrepit ladder. At one time it swayed from the wall. Hernandon was only saved from a terrible fall by the promptness with which the two men at the ends of the ladder acted.

As it was, a large piece of the weak cornice on which the ladder was resting went cluttering down into the street, waking the alcalde, who came hastily to the door. By this time the ladder had been withdrawn. Two men were left on the azotea of the gaol, while the third was left on the roof of the house to handle our drawbridge and guard our retreat.


A great gap opened in the face of the massive building as old Don Jose looked out into the quiet street. He stood there for a few minutes with an absolutely unnecessary candle in his hand staring out at the moon and apparently greatly pleased with the beautiful aspect of the soft Cuban night. Then, apparently convinced that all was safe, he turned and passed back into Recojidas, and thus passed unharmed through the most dangerous moment of his life, for every second that he remained in the street was a second fraught with death.

Three forty-four calibre revolvers covered him, and his discovery of our position on the roof would have called for his immediate execution. Time was then allowed for the natural quiet to drift back upon the scene, and when finally everything had become normal the work of getting the Journal's protege out of her loathsome dungeon was begun.

We crept softly across the roof to the window she had indicated. As we reached it we saw her standing before it. She was dressed in a dark-coloured dress, and not easily seen in the gloom inside. She gave one glad little cry and clasped our hands through the bars, calling upon us to liberate her at once. She had been standing there for over two hours and a half, but her patience never deserted her, and she know that aid was coming as she could see us on the roof of No. 1.

Bidding her be quiet, we started at work cutting through the iron bar between her and liberty. We selected the third bar on the left side of the window, and began cutting it near the bottom. Our progress was slow and wearisome, and finally, after an hour’s work, we found that we had only out part of the way through. It was impossible to use the saw quickly,as the bars were not set firmly in the frame, and rattled and rang like a fire alarm every time the saw passed across the iron.


At last a stir in the room she had quitted warned Miss Cisneros that it was best for her to retire again; so, leaving us, she slipped a sheet about her and glided quickly back to her bed at the far end of the dormitory. Before going she begged us to return the following night and complete our Work. She was quickly assured we would be on hand again, and she was contented.


I here interrupt Mr. Decker’s narrative in order to let the girl describe what passed inside the gaol.

From the moment she got the letter telling her of the plot to rescue her she became quite calm and self-possessed :-

I was not afraid or excited, or glad. or sorry any more. I just thought and thought and thought. My father has a saying, "Courage is King." I kept saying that over and over to myself, and then I began to draw a plan of the prison and of the window. I sent the letter out that same afternoon.

Miss Cisneros naturally felt an agony of suspense while Decker was filing through the bars. "The saw made a terrible noise." But the laudanum she had obtained from the doctor made the women sleep sound. But when one of them stirred and spoke, Evangelina went back to her bed :-

About ten minutes, I think it could not have been longer, I was fast asleep. I do not see how I could sleep, but I know that I did. In the morning. when I awoke, I was so weak that I could scarcely lift my hand. All that day I sat in the cell and wondered when some one would speak about that bar in the window. I do not see how it was that no one noticed that it was partly sawed through.

I new resume Mr. Decker’s story :-

We were bitterly disappointed at our failure. I had selected Tuesday night in view of the fact that the next day afforded an opportunity to catch the steamer to Key West, where we could send a man with the full story of the night's occurrence, as it was well known that no detailed account of the escape could be cabled from Havana.

We trusted to luck, however, to stand by us, hoping only that our anxious neighbours in No. 3 would not give the alarm, and that the cut bar would remain undiscovered. We had no means of knowing the next day whether or not our attempt of the night before had been discovered, but proceeded on the assumption that it had not, and so determined to carry out our plans to the letter.

A lot of cheap second-hand furniture was purchased in one of the outlying suburbs and was placed in our house, and that night when we went there we were surrounded by our own household lares and penates. A huge porron decorated the tinujero, flanked on either side by a bottle of jenevra and a big bundle of brevas. Our sideboard was set with plates and other crockery, and a chest of drawers, a folding table and a pair of canvas folding cots had been sent in.

We dragged out the tables and set forth candles until it gleamed like a banquet board. Then we threw open the window so that the neighbours might look upon the newcomers in the neighbourhood and become acquainted with them, and, finally, fell into a game of poker around the table that came near destroying all our strongly cemented friendship.


Until 11 o'clock the game went on. A brace of guards in their striking blue and red uniforms, lounged up to the windows to note whether we played for wind or centens, and, finding the game as innocent as a day in May, wandered off with their swords clanking about their heels. At 11 o'clock we shut the window and barred out the soft, bright moonlight that flooded the room with its silvery glory, and then turned in for a couple of hours' patient waiting.

It was not easy work, as the stone floor we lay upon was as hard as the heart of Weyler and twice as cold. The bundle of brevas went up in smoke as we lay there talking in whispers, and finally the time for action arrived. The inmates of No. 3 were again awake, and far from being impressed by our household furniture, seemed to fear us even more than the night before. It was dread of the strangers in the alley that kept them quiet and made Miss Cisneros’s release possible.

They set up talking this night during the entire time we were working on the roof, and were still sputtering Spanish when we left them. This time the fairies seemed to be working with us, and everything moved as smoothly as clockwork. The ladder was raised to the roof without a sound, and as we pattered about in our stocking feet a spell of enchantment seemed to fall upon the city. Far off in the haze of moonlight a jangling chime of bells seemed changed by some magic into sweetest music, and the ugly tile roofs and queer bits of old Moorish architecture, jutting angularly here and there, seemed transformed by some magician's touch into palaces.


Again the light, frail ladder was thrown across from the roof of the azotea. The trying and perilous journey was made as quickly as possible. The ladder was withdrawn and we were again in front of the window behind which Miss Cisneros was imprisoned.

This time there was no delay. Our outfit consisted of a pair of Stilson wrenches, and, putting one above and one below the cut made the night before, we wrenched the bar asunder with one snap. In a second I had caught the broken bar and had pulled it out enough for a purchase, and then, lipping my nee under, I drew it up till it was horizontal with the roof. I then stooped, slipped the bar across my shoulder, and, grasping the crossbar above, straightened myself, bringing the bar for up in the air. A second later I had twisted myself into a huge V above the crossbar, and, reaching down, caught Miss Cisneros by the shoulders and pulled her through the opening.

Could the women of the United States have seen the smile on that poor girl's face as she realised that at last, after fifteen months of prison life, she was at liberty, they would have felt a happiness as great almost as hers. That one fleeting smile of ineffable happiness was reward enough for both of us there at the window for all our work and risk.

To Miss Cisneros inside the gaol that day seemed an eternity. When night came she again put laudanum in the coffee and then lay down and pretended to sleep :-

When all was well I got up and put on my dress and stood at the window again, and counted again, and prayed again. The moon was shining very bright; oh! so big and round and white; there were three clouds near the moon and one of them was shaped like a mountain and I played to myself that I would climb up that mountain, and I began in my mind to walk up the jagged edges of the cliffs.

It was in some way like a dream, and she was not surprised when the man came back and began to saw at the bar. But when the bar broke, she had to put her hand over her mouth to prevent herself screaming for joy.

When he lifted her he wanted to carry her across the ladder. "I ran across myself I felt as if I could run miles."

Mr. Decker says :—

To get our little heroine safely away was now the question. The trip across the creaking, swaying ladder was made by Miss Cisneros with the grace and ease of a frightened fawn. The astute detectives who found a knotted rope on the roof stated that the ends had been held by two men on either roof, affording Miss Cisneros a hand-rail to guide her across.

Nothing of the sort was done. The knotted rope was to be used in case of emergency, in case our return to the roof of No. 1 should be cut off, forcing us to descend from some other part of the building. Miss Cisneros needed no hand-rail in her state of joy and exhilaration.


No time was lost in getting away from the building. We quickly made our way downstairs, donned our shoes and made off. The neighbours heard the clang of the heavy doors closing, then the sharp, quick rattle of a carriage dashing recklessly off over the cobbles, and then quiet fell upon the neighbourhood of the Recojidas. The beautiful girl prisoner was at liberty and would never again feel the suffocation of the crowding walls.


When it was known in Havana that the bird had flown the authorities were frantic. They interrogated everybody, searched everywhere, made domiciliary visits in almost every conceivable dwelling-house, but always in vain. It was reported that she had escaped in a small boat, and at once the swiftest cruiser in the port, with all available steamers, were commissioned to steam in hot haste to overtake her before she reached the Florida coast.

The story of her escape is best told in her own words. Miss Cisneros says:—

There was a carriage waiting. We jumped into the carriage. and the horses' feet went clip clap, clip clap, clip clap down the street. I don’t think any of us spoke.

Reaching a friend’s house, she alighted and found shelter. When she slept, she always found herself climbing up the sides of the steep mountain, with the round moon staring down at her like a sick face. Three days she remained in hiding. Her hair was cut off; she was dressed like a boy, and instructed in the art of walking like a man. "I felt like a little nothing, I was so small, and my feet looked so big, and I did not like it."

At five o’clock on the third day she was driven in a carriage down to the wharf with the two men, Decker and the Cuban, who helped her to escape. Entering a little boat, they were rowed out to the American steamer Seneca. "If it had not been for the cigar I should have laughed with happiness." When she reached the deck, she was shown into a little cabin. She went in and crawled under the lowest berth and lay there "like a naughty little boy who is going to get a whipping and was hiding." All at once the door opened and a man entered. She did not breathe. The man struck a match. "It is all over," she thought, "they have caught me." And she resolved to jump overboard and end it all. But it was only the purser of the steamer to tell her they were an hour out from Havana, and that she was free.

"Then I became very, very sick. If it was the escape, or the sea, or perhaps the cigar, I don’t know."

What a charming human girl she is!

Next day she was well and her heart sang all the way, and she had only one regret :—

I hate to think of the little woman who wanted to breathe sea air again. I feel guilty to be here, free and happy, and cared for. I wish I could have brought her with me.

And my father - my poor father - how I wish I could have seen him when he heard of my escape.

I do not think he will believe it. Good news is hard to believe in Cuba. I am so grateful for my release, and to the friends who have helped me that I cannot speak of it. I have no words.

She had a false passport, secured in the name of Juan Solo, and no one suspected her identity, nor did-any one in Cuba know where she had gone until her arrival was telegraphed from New York.

As for Decker, her rescuer, he was of course extremely suspected owing to the fact that the New York Journal, whose representative he was, was known to be the first that published the news of her escape. Nothing, however, could be proved, and he had the audacity to leave the island on board a Spanish steamer, nor was it known until he arrived at New York that the Spaniards had any idea that they had actually conveyed the man for whom they were searching everywhere, under the Spanish flag, in a Spanish ship, to safety in American waters.

It is not necessary here to continue the narrative any further beyond saying that no event has excited as much interest and enthusiasm in the United States for many a long day. Mr. Hearst was inundated with telegrams from all parts of the Union, eulogising the service which he had rendered to humanity. Even Mr. Sherman, the Secretary of State, expressed his sympathy with the Journal’s enterprise. Mr. Gage, the Secretary of the Treasury, telegraphed his emphatic approval of what the Journal had done, while senators and governors vied with each other in applauding the enterprise and philanthropy of the newspaper. Nor was it only from the United States that he received this unstinted applause. The Pope himself was said to have expressed his gratification at so happy an escape from a hopeless impasse, while our own Bishop of London telegraphed to Mr. Hearst in enthusiastic terms.

Similar telegrams, more or less in the same strain, were received from the Duke of Westminster, Lady Rothschild, Lady Henry Somerset, and others. Miss Cisneros, since her arrival in New York, became the heroine of the Continent, and at a great reception held in Madison Square Garden an immense concourse of people, estimated at two hundred thousand, assembled to cheer the brave young girl and her gallant rescuer.

Such is the story that our press has so strangely, or, possibly inadvertently, conspired to suppress. It is full of every element of human interest. Whether it is the description of Mr. Hearst, the millionaire journalist, or of Karl Decker the reporter, to whom the breaking of a Spanish gaol was a more matter of journalistic assignment in the day’s work of a modern newspaper man, or of the central figure of all - the romantic, beautiful Evangelina herself - could there be any narrative more full of good copy?