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DETECTIVE STORIES FROM REAL LIFE

A Flight Into Texas
A Formidable Weapon
A Wish Unexpectedly Gratified
Adventures In The Secret Service Of The Post-office Department
An Aspirant For Congress
An Erring Shepherd
An Old Game Revived
Saint-germain The Deathless
The Fortune Of Seth Savage

The Lock And Key Library

A Case Of Identity
A Conjurer's Confessions
A Flight Into Texas
A Formidable Weapon
A Mystery With A Moral
A Scandal In Bohemia
A Wish Unexpectedly Gratified
Addressed To The Advocate Who Defended Him At His Trial
Adventure Of The Black Fisherman
Adventures In The Secret Service Of The Post-office Department
An Aspirant For Congress
An Erring Shepherd
An Heiress From Redhorse
An Old Game Revived
Bourgonef
By The Waters Of Paradise
Deception Explained By The Science Of Psychology
Facing The Arab's Pistol
Fact And Fable In Psychology
Fraudulent Spiritualism Unveiled[1]
His Wedded Wife
Horror: A True Tale
How Spirits Materialize
How The Tricks Succeeded
In The House Of Suddhoo
Introduction To A Mystery With A Moral
Introduction To Melmoth The Wanderer
Introduction To The Corpus Delicti
Matter Through Matter
Melmoth The Wanderer
Mind Reading In Public
My Own True Ghost Story
My Wife's Tempter
No 1 Branch Line: The Signal-man
On Being Found Out
Saint-germain The Deathless
Second Sight
Some Famous Exposures
The Avenger
The Baron's Quarry
The Closed Cabinet
The Corpus Delicti
The Dream Woman
The Fortune Of Seth Savage
The Fowl In The Pot
The Gold-bug
The Golden Ingot
The Great Valdez Sapphire
The Haunted And The Haunters Or The House And The Brain
The Hostler's Story Told By Himself
The Incantation
The Lost Duchess
The Magician Who Became An Ambassador
The Man And The Snake
The Man In The Iron Mask
The Methods Of A Doctor Of The Occult
The Minister's Black Veil
The Minor Canon
The Mortals In The House
The Name Of The Dead
The Notch On The Ax - A Story A La Mode
The Oblong Box
The Pavilion On The Links
The Pipe
The Puzzle
The Red-headed League
The Sending Of Dana Da
The Shadows On The Wall
The Story Continued By Percy Fairbank
Wieland's Madness
Wolfert Webber Or Golden Dreams



A Flight Into Texas








The flight and extradition of Charles F. Dodge unquestionably
involved one of the most extraordinary battles with justice in the
history of the criminal law. The funds at the disposal of those
who were interested in procuring the prisoner's escape were
unlimited in extent, and the arch conspirator for whose safety
Dodge was spirited away was so influential in political and
criminal circles that he was all but successful in defying the
prosecutor of New York County, even supported as the latter was by
the military and judicial arm of the United States Government.
For, at the time that Dodge made his escape, a whisper from Hummel
was enough to make the dry bones of many a powerful and ostensibly
respectable official rattle and the tongue cleave to the roof of
his mouth in terror.


(The District Attorney's office in New York City is undoubtedly one
of the best watch-towers known from which to observe "Real Life
Detective Stories."

Arthur Train, sometime member of this prosecuting staff, has
opportunity to record several of these curious and exciting "True
Stories of Crime" (copyright, 1908, by Charles Scribners Sons).
None yields less to fiction save in the fact that it is true, and
not at all in quality of dramatic interest, than "A Flight into
Texas," here given.

Readers of the newspapers a few years ago will remember the names
of Abraham Hummel and Charles F. Dodge. The latter, a railroad
conductor, was alleged to have committed perjury at the dictate of
the former, known as one of the brightest, least scrupulous lawyers
in this city. It was one of District Attorney Jerome's great
ambitions to bring Hummel to justice. Here was an opportunity. If
Dodge could only be forced to testify to this perjury before a
court, Hummel could undoubtedly be convicted of a crime that would
not only disbar him from the legal profession, but would put him in
jail.

Dodge had run away and disappeared as the storm seemed about to
burst. Where was he? Who could find and bring him back--against
Abe Hummel's wish?--EDITOR.)


Who could accomplish that in which the law was powerless?--Hummel.
Who could drive to the uttermost ends of the earth persons against
whom not a shadow of suspicion had previously rested?--Hummel. Who
dictated to the chiefs of police of foreign cities what they should
or should not do in certain cases; and who could, at the beckoning
of his little finger, summon to his dungeon-like offices in the New
York Life Building, whither his firm had removed from Centre
Street, the most prominent of lawyers, the most eminent of
citizens?--Surely none but Hummel. And now Hummel was fighting for
his own life. The only man that stood between him and the iron
bars of Blackwell's Island was Charles F. Dodge--the man whom he
had patted on the knee in his office and called a "Mascot," when
quite in the nature of business he needed a little perjury to
assist a wealthy client.

Hummel in terror called into play every resource upon which, during
forty years of practice, his tiny tentacles had fastened. Who
shall say that while he made a show of enjoying himself nightly
with his accustomed lightheartedness in the Tenderloin, he did not
feel confident that in the end this peril would disappear like the
others which had from time to time threatened him during his
criminal career? But Hummel was fully aware of the tenacity of the
man who had resolved to rid New York of his malign influence. His
Nemesis was following him. In his dreams, if he ever dreamed, it
probably took the shape of the square-shouldered District Attorney
in the shadow of whose office building the little shyster practiced
his profession. Had he been told that this Nemesis was in reality
a jovial little man with a round, ruddy face and twinkling blue
eyes he would have laughed as heartily as it was in his power to
laugh. Yet such was the fact. A little man who looked less like a
detective than a commercial traveler selling St. Peter's Oil or
some other cheerful concoction, with manners as gentle and a voice
as soft as a spring zephyr, who always took off his hat when he
came into a business office, seemingly bashful to the point of
self-effacement, was the one who snatched Charles F. Dodge from the
borders of Mexico and held him in an iron grip when every influence
upon which Hummel could call for aid, from crooked police
officials, corrupt judges, and a gang of cutthroats under the guise
of a sheriff's posse, were fighting for his release.

Jesse Blocher is not employed in New York County, and for business
reasons he does not wish his present address known. When he comes
to New York he occasionally drops into the writer's office for a
cigar and a friendly chat about old times. And as he sits there
and talks so modestly and with such quiet humor about his
adventures with the Texas Rangers among the cactus-studded plains
of the Lone Star State, it is hard, even for one who knows the
truth, to realize that this man is one of the greatest of
detectives, or rather one of the most capable, resourceful, adroit,
and quick-witted knights of adventure who ever set forth upon a
seemingly impossible errand.

It is unnecessary to state just how the District Attorney
discovered the existence of "Jesse," as we knew him. It is enough
to say that on Saturday morning, July 23, 1904, he was furnished
with the proper credentials and given instructions to proceed at
once to New Orleans, Louisiana, and "locate," if it were humanly
possible to do so, Charles F. Dodge, under indictment for perjury,
and potentially the chief witness against Abraham H. Hummel, on a
charge of conspiracy. He was told briefly and to the point that,
in spite of the official reports from the police headquarters of
both New York City and New Orleans to the contrary, there was
reason to believe that Dodge was living, although not registered,
as a guest at the St. Charles Hotel in the latter city. A partial
and inaccurate description of Dodge was given him and he was warned
to use extreme caution to prevent any knowledge of his mission from
being made known. Once Dodge had been discovered, he was to keep
him under surveillance and wire New York immediately.

Accordingly, Jesse left the city upon the same day at 4.45 P. M.
and arrived two days later, at 9.15 on Monday morning, at New
Orleans, where he went directly to the St. Charles Hotel,
registered, and was assigned to room Number 547 on the fifth floor.
Somewhere in the hotel Dodge was secreted. The question was how to
find him. For an hour Jesse sat in the hotel foyer and
meditatively watched the visitors come and go, but saw no sign of
his quarry. Then he arose, put on his hat, and hunted out a
stationery store where for two cents he bought a bright-red
envelope. He then visited a ticket-scalper's office, secured the
owner's business card, and wrote a note on its back to Dodge,
offering him cheap transportation to any point that he might
desire. Armed with this he returned to the hotel, walked to the
desk, glanced casually over a number of telegrams exposed in a rack
and, when the clerk turned his back, placed the note, addressed to
Charles F. Dodge, unobserved, upon the counter. The office was a
busy one, guests were constantly depositing their keys and
receiving their mail, and, even as Jesse stood there watching
developments, the clerk turned round, found the note, and promptly
placed it in box Number 420. The very simple scheme had worked,
and quite unconsciously the clerk had indicated the number of the
room occupied by Dodge.

Jesse lost no time in ascending to the fourth floor, viewed room
Number 420, returned to the desk, told the clerk that he was
dissatisfied with the room assigned him, and requested that he be
given either room Number 421, 423, or 425, one of which he stated
that he had occupied on a previous visit. After some discussion
the clerk allotted him room Number 423, which was almost directly
opposite that occupied by Dodge, and the detective at once took up
his task of watching for the fugitive to appear.

Within the hour the door opened and Dodge and a companion, who
subsequently proved to be E. M. Bracken, alias "Bradley," an agent
employed by Howe and Hummel, left the room, went to the elevator,
and descended to the dining-room upon the second floor. Jesse
watched until they were safely ensconced at breakfast and then
returned to the fourth floor where he tipped the chambermaid, told
her that he had left his key at the office, and induced her to
unlock the door of room Number 420, which she did under the
supposition that Jesse was the person who had left the chamber in
Dodge's company. The contents of the room convinced Jesse that he
had found Dodge, for he discovered there two grips bearing Dodge's
name as well as several letters on the table addressed to him. The
detective returned to the hall and had a little talk with the maid.

"The old gentleman with you has been quite sick," she said. "How
is he to-day?"

"He is some better," answered Jesse.

"Yes, he does look better to-day," she added, "but he sho'ly was
powerful sick yesterday. Why, he hasn't been out of his room befo'
fo' five or six days."

This statement was corroborated by Dodge's physical appearance, for
he looked haggard and worn.

Jesse was now confident that he had found Dodge, in spite of the
reports of the New Orleans police to the contrary, and he was also
reasonably sure that the fugitive was too sick to leave the hotel
immediately. He therefore telegraphed his superiors that he had
discovered Dodge and that the latter was ill at the St. Charles
Hotel.

At three o'clock in the afternoon Jesse received a wire from New
York as follows:


"New Orleans police department claims party not there. Left for
Mexico three weeks ago. Ascertain correct destination and wire at
once."


Jesse at once replied:


"No question as to identity and presence here at this time."


He now took up the task of keeping his quarry under absolute
surveillance day and night, which duty from that moment he
continued for a period of nearly ten months.

During the remainder of the afternoon and throughout the night
Dodge and Bracken remained in room Number 420, and during the
evening were visited by several strangers, including a plain-
clothes officer from the New Orleans Police Headquarters. Little
Hummel, dining in Long Acre Square in the glare of Broadway, was
pressing some invisible button that transmitted the power of his
influence even to the police government of a city two thousand
miles away.

The following day, January 26th, at about 8.40 in the morning,
Dodge and Bracken descended to the lobby. Bracken departed from
the hotel, leaving Dodge to pay the bill at the cashier's window
and Jesse heard him order a cab for the 11.30 A. M. Sunset Limited
on the Southern Pacific Railroad and direct that his baggage be
removed from his room. Jesse did the same.

In the meantime Bracken returned and promptly at 11 A. M. left for
the railroad station in a cab with Dodge. Jesse followed in
another. As the two passed through the gates the detective caught
a glimpse of Dodge's ticket and saw that it had been issued by the
Mexican National Railway. Retiring to the telegraph office in the
station he wired New York as follows:


"Bird flying.--Sunset Limited. Destination not known. I am with
him."


He then hastily purchased a ticket to Houston, Texas, and boarded
the train. Dodge's companion had bidden him good-by as the engine
started, and Jesse's task now became that of ferreting out Dodge's
destination. After some difficulty he managed to get a glimpse of
the whole of the fugitive's ticket and thus discovered that he was
on his way to the City of Mexico, via Eagle Pass, Texas, while from
the Pullman conductor he learned that Dodge had secured sleeping-
car accommodation as far as San Antonio, Texas, only.

So far all was well. He knew Dodge but Dodge did not know him, and
later on in the afternoon he had the satisfaction of a long talk
with his quarry in the observation car where they amiably discussed
together current events and argued politics with the same vehemence
as if they had been commercial travellers thrown fortuitously into
each other's company. Dodge, however, cleverly evaded any
reference to his destination.


When the train reached Morgan City, Louisiana, at 3 P. M., which
was the first stop, Jesse wired New York as follows:


"On Sunset Limited with friend. He has transportation to the City
of Mexico, via Eagle Pass, where I am now journeying with him.
Answer to Beaumont, Texas."


Later in the afternoon he sent an additional message from
Lafayette, Louisiana:


"Have seen transportation of friend and am positive of
destination."


Dodge was occupying Section 3 of the sleeping car "Capitola," and,
as became an invalid, retired early.

At Beaumont Jesse failed to receive any reply to his various
messages, and when the train arrived at Houston no word came from
New York until it was almost the time of departure. Waiting until
practically the last moment Jesse hurried through the gates of the
Union Station at Houston and bought a ticket to San Antonio. As he
was leaving the ticket window Night Chief of Police John Howard and
two officers came hurrying up inquiring anxiously for "Mr. Jesse."
The reenforcements had arrived.

Outside on the track "The Sunset Limited" was just getting under
way. The first frantic puffs were being vomited from the funnel.
Inside Dodge was sleeping peacefully in his berth. Jesse,
accompanied by Chief Howard, hurried up to the conductor who was
about to swing on to the steps of the sleeper, and ordered him to
hold the train till the fugitive could be removed. After some
argument the conductor grumblingly complied and Dodge was aroused
from pleasant dreams of the "Creole Quarter" to the cold reality of
being dragged out of bed by a policeman. He was unceremoniously
hustled out of the sleeping car into a carriage and taken to
Headquarters where he admitted his identity and remarked:

"I know what I am wanted for, but I will never return to New York."

In his grip was found the sum of $1,563.15, as well as numerous
letters from the law firm of Howe and Hummel, and a quantity of
newspaper clippings relative to his case.

Dodge pleaded with Chief Howard not to lock him up, urging that he
was a sick man and offering a goodly sum if he might be taken to a
hotel and guarded for the remainder of the night. But what "went"
in New Orleans did not "go" in Houston, and the best that Dodge
could get for himself was a cot in the "Ladies' Detention Room" on
the second floor of the jail.

Early the following morning Jesse visited Police Headquarters and
for the first time met George Ellis, Chief of Police of Houston,
for whom he will always have a feeling of deep gratitude for his
enthusiastic cooperation and loyalty in the many stirring events
that followed. Dodge now received a telegram from New York, which
was submitted to Jesse before reaching the prisoner, to the effect
that Howe and Hummel were sending on an attorney to aid the
fugitive in resisting extradition, and informing him that they had
employed Messrs. Hunt and Meyers as attorneys to look out for his
welfare. These last immediately jumped in medias res and on the
afternoon of the same day secured a writ of habeas corpus from
Norman J. Kitrell, District Judge of Harris County, Texas,
returnable the following morning.

The next day, January 28th, Kitrell released Dodge from custody.

Jesse had anticipated this and immediately swore out another
warrant with the result that the prisoner was rearrested before he
left the courtroom.

Meantime the Dodge interests retained another firm of lawyers,
Messrs. Andrews and Ball, who, on the following day, secured a
second writ of habeas corpus from Judge Ashe.

The result of the first engagement thus being a draw, counsel on
both sides agreed that this writ should not be returnable for six
days. During this period District Attorney Jerome employed Messrs.
Baker, Botts, Parker and Garwood to represent him and secured from
Governor Odell at Albany a requisition on Governor Lanham of Texas
for the extradition of the prisoner, which he entrusted to
Detective Sergeant Herlihy of the New York Police. Herlihy reached
Houston with the papers on the evening of January 30th, and on the
same train with him came Abraham Kaffenburgh, a member of the law
firm of Howe and Hummel and a nephew of the latter. Likewise also
came Bracken, still styling himself "E. M. Bradley," and from now
on Bracken was the inseparable companion, guide, philosopher, and
friend (?) of the unfortunate Dodge, whose continued existence upon
this earth had become such a menace to the little lawyer in New
York.

Herlihy, accompanied by Judge Garwood, proceeded direct to Austin
where they found Dodge already represented by Messrs. Andrews and
Ball who, at the hearing before Governor Lanham, made a strong
effort to induce that executive to refuse to honor the requisition
of the Governor of New York. This effort failed and Governor
Lanham issued his warrant, but Herlihy had no sooner returned to
Houston for the purpose of taking possession of the prisoner than
he was served with an injunction enjoining him, together with Chief
of Police Ellis, from taking Dodge into custody, pending a hearing
upon a new habeas corpus which had been issued by Judge Waller T.
Burns of the United States District Court for the Southern District
of Texas. This new writ was returnable February 9th.

After exhaustive but futile argument by the counsel for Dodge,
Judge Burns remanded the prisoner to Herlihy's custody to be
returned to the State of New York, but this decision had no sooner
been rendered than an appeal was taken therefrom by Dodge's
lawyers, and the prisoner released upon bail fixed at twenty
thousand dollars.

During this period Dodge was quartered under guard at the Rice
Hotel in Houston, and the day following the argument the twenty-
thousand-dollars bail was put up in cash and Dodge released from
custody.

In the meantime, however, Jesse, knowing that no sum, however
large, would deter Hummel from spiriting Dodge out of the country,
had made his arrangements to secure a new extradition warrant from
the Governor of Texas, so that if the prisoner did succeed in
getting beyond the Southern District of the Federal Court of Texas,
he could be seized and conveyed to New York.

Of course someone had to keep watch over Dodge while Jesse hurried
to Austin to see the Governor, and it was decided to leave Sergeant
Herlihy, re-enforced by a number of local detectives for that
purpose. But while the watchful Jesse was away, Bracken proceeded
to get busy in the good old Howe and Hummel fashion. Lots of
people that Herlihy had never seen before turned up and protested
that he was the finest fellow they had ever met. And as Herlihy
was, in fact, a good fellow, he made them welcome and dined and
wined at their expense until he woke up in the Menger Hotel in San
Antonio and inquired where he was.

Jesse meantime had returned from Austin to discover that Dodge with
his companions, Kaffenburgh and Bracken, had slipped out of Houston
early in the morning of February 11th, after disposing of Herlihy
and eluding the watchfulness of Herlihy's assistants. Hummel was
leading and by ten o'clock the next morning Dodge and his comrades
were on board an English merchantman lying in the harbor of
Galveston. Later in the same day the Hummel interests chartered
from the Southern Pacific Railroad for the sum of three thousand
dollars the sea-going tug Hughes, to which Dodge was now
transferred for the purpose of being conveyed to the port of
Tampico in the Republic of Mexico.

But here Hummel's wires became crossed with Jerome's, and
unfortunately for the little lawyer, the persons from whom the tug
had been leased turned out to be closely allied with the
prosecution's interests, with the result that the captain of the
tug was instructed by his superiors under no consideration to put
into any Mexican port, but on the contrary, to delay his departure
from the harbor of Galveston for a period of two days and then to
proceed only as far as Brownsville, Texas, where he should compel
the debarkation of the fugitive. The captain, who was a good sport
as well as a good officer, promptly threw himself into the part and
told Bracken and Kaffenburgh that it was evident from the barometer
that a severe storm was approaching (which must have had a sinister
implication to these two unfortunate gentlemen), and that he could
not think of putting to sea. Once the "storm" had blown over, the
tug started out across the blue waters of the Gulf of Mexico. But
now Bracken and Kaffenburgh were informed for the first time it was
impossible to consider putting into any port of the Republic of
Mexico, since to do so would cause international complications and
compel the revocation of the captain's license. In desperation the
Hummel interests offered the captain five thousand dollars in cash
to disregard his instructions and put into Tampico, but the worthy
sea-dog was adamant. It was probably worth five thousand dollars
to him to see three gentry of this pattern so much put about.

While Dodge and his accomplices were dallying in the harbor of
Galveston, Jesse was taking advantage of his opportunity to proceed
at once by railroad to Alice, Texas, which at that time was the
furthermost southern point reached by any railway in the direction
of Brownsville. On his arrival, he at once applied to Captain John
R. Hughes, commanding Company D of the Texas Rangers, who received
him with great joy and ordered a detachment of the Rangers to meet
the tug at Point Isabelle at the mouth of the Rio Grande River on
the border of Mexico. In the meantime, Jesse started on a toilsome
stage journey to Brownsville, across one hundred and seventy miles
of desert, which occupied two days and nights, and necessitated his
going without sleep for that period. During the trip Jesse heard
no word of English and had as his associates only Mexican
cattlemen. Every fifteen miles a fresh relay of broncos was
hitched to the stage and after a few moments' rest the misery began
again.

Jesse had been hurrying toward Brownsville by stage while Dodge,
Kaffenburgh, and Bracken were landing at Point Isabelle, where they
were kept under close surveillance by Sergeant Tom Ross of the
Rangers. Thence they took the train to Brownsville, registering at
the Miller House under the assumed names of C. F. Dougherty, A.
Koontzman, and E. M. Barker, all of Oklahoma. But, although they
knew it not, Sergeant Tom was at their elbow, and had Dodge
attempted to cross the border into Mexico he would instantly have
been placed under arrest.

As Brownsville was within the Southern District of the Federal
Court of Texas, Jesse decided not to arrest Dodge until he should
actually attempt flight, and when Dodge and his companions, on the
following morning, February 15th, entered the stage (the same upon
which Jesse had arrived) and started for Alice, Jesse and Tom Ross
procured the best horses they could find and started after them,
keeping just in sight of the stage. Dodge's intention in making
this move was to take the Mexican International Railway at Alice
and cross over to Mexico via Laredo.

Jesse and Ross covered the seventy-four miles from Brownsville to
Santa La Cruz Ranch by four in the afternoon, which was fairly
strenuous work for a New York detective, and here found themselves
so sore and exhausted from their ride that they were glad to hire a
pair of horses and buggy with which to complete the journey to
Alice. Luckily they were able to get into telephonic communication
with various ranch owners along the road and arrange to have fresh
relays of horses supplied to them every twenty miles, and here also
Jesse called up Captain Hughes at Alice, and suggested that he
substitute for the regular night clerk at the City Hotel one of the
privates of the Rangers by the name of Harrod.

Dodge and his companions arrived in Alice on February 17th, and, as
Jesse had anticipated, repaired at once to the City Hotel, where,
inasmuch as they were dry from the dust of their trip and depressed
by lack of society, they entered at once into an enthusiastic and
confidential friendship with the man behind the counter in the
hotel office, sublimely ignorant that they were unfolding to a
member of the Texas Rangers all their most secret intentions.
Harrod was just as glad to see Dodge as Dodge apparently was to see
Harrod, and kindly offered to assist the fugitive to get into
Mexico in any way that the latter desired. Dodge, for his part,
took advantage of his usefulness to the extent of requesting him to
purchase them railroad tickets, the plan being to leave Alice the
following morning for Monterey, Mexico. Three hours after the
stage bearing Dodge and his party pulled up at the City Hotel, Tom
Ross and Jesse drove in behind a pair of fagged-out broncos at two
in the morning. Jesse had had no sleep of any sort and no proper
nourishment for five days, and had just strength enough left to
drag himself up one flight of stairs and tumble into bed, from
which he did not emerge for many hours.

In the meantime day broke and Dodge, Kaffenburgh, and Bracken,
having breakfasted, drove comfortably down to the International
Railway Station and settled themselves in the smoker, but they had
no sooner given this direct evidence of their intention before
Captain Hughes entered and placed Dodge under arrest. The latter's
surprise may be appreciated when it is stated that from the time
the three had left Houston, they had no idea that they were being
followed and believed that they had completely foiled Jesse and his
assistants.

While Jesse had been chasing Dodge across the desert, his lawyers
had not been idle and had secured at Austin another extradition
warrant from Governor Lanham, who, on receiving news of the arrest,
promptly instructed Captain Hughes by wire to assume charge of the
prisoner and to deliver him into the hands of the New York officer
to be conveyed to New York.

There now began such a legal battle as the State of Texas had never
known. Hummel had been forced into his last ditch and was fighting
desperately for life. Through Kaffenburgh he at once applied for a
new writ of habeas corpus in Nueces County and engaged counsel at
Corpus Christi to assist in fighting for the release of the
prisoner. Precisely as Hummel had intended, Chief Wright of Nueces
rode into Alice and demanded the prisoner from Captain Hughes. As
Hummel had NOT intended, Captain Hughes refused to surrender the
prisoner and told Chief Wright to go to--well, he told him that he
intended to obey his commander-in-chief, the Governor of Texas.

On February 20th, Hummel, through Kaffenburgh, attempted to get
another writ of habeas corpus in Bee County, and promptly the Bee
chief came buzzing over and demanded Dodge, but to him Hughes
replied even as he had spoken to Wright.

Excitement in Alice had now reached such a pitch that Judge Burns,
of the Federal Court, in Houston, ordered United States Marshal
John W. Vann, of Alice, to assume charge of the prisoner. The
indomitable Hughes, however, paid no more attention to the United
States Marshal than he had to the local chiefs. But the situation
was so delicate and the clash of authority might so easily have
resulted in bloodshed that it was finally agreed by all parties
that the best thing to do was to have the prisoner returned to
Houston in the JOINT custody of Captain Hughes of the Rangers and
the United States Marshal.

Jesse, through his counsel, in proper course, made application to
forfeit Dodge's bond and remand him to jail, but the Hummel
attorneys finally induced the Court, on the plea that to confine
Dodge in jail would be detrimental to his already badly impaired
health, to permit the prisoner to go free on a greatly increased
bond, nevertheless restricting his movements to Harris County,
Texas.

While Jesse had fought a winning battle up to this point he was at
the end of his resources so far as the extradition of the prisoner
was concerned, for Dodge was now at liberty, pending the decisions
upon the habeas corpus proceedings of the United States Circuit
Court of Appeals at Fort Worth, and the United States Supreme Court
at Washington. But his orders were to BRING DODGE BACK TO New
York. Hence, with the aid of some new men sent him from the North,
he commenced an even closer surveillance of the prisoner than ever
before by both day and night.

Meantime Kaffenburgh departed for New York, fleeing from the wrath
of Judge Burns, who had issued a summons for him for contempt of
the Federal Court on the ground that he had induced Dodge to
attempt to jump his bond. In place of the blustering Kaffenburgh
was sent another member of the famous law firm of Howe and Hummel,
David May, an entirely different type of man. May was as mild as a
day in June--as urbane as Kaffenburgh had been insolent. He
fluttered into Houston like a white dove of peace with the
proverbial olive branch in his mouth. From now on the tactics
employed by the representatives of Hummel were conciliatory in the
extreme. Mr. May, however, did not long remain in Houston, as it
was apparent that there was nothing to be done by either side
pending the action of the courts, and in any event Dodge was
abundantly supplied with local counsel. The time had now come when
Hummel must have begun to feel that the fates were against him and
that a twenty-year term in state prison was a concrete possibility
even for him.

In the meantime, Dodge and Bracken had taken up their headquarters
at the Rice Hotel in the most expensive suite of rooms in the
house, a new scheme for getting the prisoner beyond the reach of
the New York courts apparently having been concocted. Dodge was
now indulged in every conceivable luxury and vice. He was plunged
into every sort of excess, there was no debauchery which Bracken
could supply that was not his and their rapid method of existence
was soon the talk of the county and continued to be so for ten long
months. There is more than one way to kill a cat and more than one
method of wiping out the only existing witness against a desperate
man striving to escape the consequences of crime.

Dodge's daily routine was somewhat as follows: He never slept at
his own hotel, but arose in the morning between ten and eleven
o'clock, when he was at once visited by Bracken and supplied with
numerous drinks in lieu of the breakfast for which he never had any
desire. At noon the two would have luncheon with more drinks. In
the afternoon they would retire to the poolrooms and play the
races, and, when the races were over, they would then visit the
faro banks and gamble until midnight or later. Later on they would
proceed to another resort on Louisiana Street where Dodge really
lived. Here his day may be said to have begun and here he spent
most of his money, frequently paying out as much as fifty dollars a
night for wine and invariably ending in a beastly state of
intoxication. It is quite probable that never in the history of
debauchery has any one man ever been so indulged in excesses of
every sort for the same period of time as Dodge was during the
summer and fall of 1904. The fugitive never placed his foot on
mother earth. If they were going only a block, Bracken called for
a cab, and the two seemed to take a special delight in making
Jesse, as Jerome's representative, spend as much money in cab hire
as possible. The Houston jehus never again experienced so
profitable a time as they did during Dodge's wet season; and the
life of dissipation was continued until, from time to time, the
prisoner became so weak from its effects that he was forced to go
under the care of a physician. A few days of abstinence always
restored his vitality and he would then start out upon another
round of pleasure.

During this period Jesse maintained a close and vigilant personal
espionage over the prisoner. For over ten months he slept less
than four hours each day, his fatigue being increased by the
constant apprehension of treachery among his own men, and the
necessity of being ever on the alert to prevent some move on the
part of the defense to spirit the prisoner away. During the summer
attempts were repeatedly made to evade the vigilance of Jesse and
his men and several desperate dashes were frustrated by them,
including one occasion when Bracken succeeded in rushing Dodge as
far as Galveston, where they were forced to abandon their design.

From time to time Bracken would disappear from Houston for a week
or ten days, stating on his return that he had been to New York,
after which there was invariably some new move to get the prisoner
away. Time and space prevent giving a detailed account of all the
marches and counter-marches that took place in this battle of wit
against wit.

In August, 1904, Bracken made one of his periodical visits to New
York, and when he returned sought out Jesse and said: "Blocher, you
might as well be a good fellow and get yours while you can. I mean
that Dodge is not going back to New York, even if it cost a million
dollars to prevent it." A few days later Bracken sent a gambler
named Warner to Jesse, who offered the latter thirty-five hundred
dollars to get "lost" long enough for the prisoner to slip over to
Mexico. Acting upon the advice of his attorney, Jesse encouraged
this attempt, under the belief that if he could get the Hummel
forces in the position of having attempted to bribe him the
prisoner's bail could then be forfeited and Dodge himself taken
into custody. Hummel became wary, however, and apparently
abandoned for the time the idea of bribery. Later on Bracken again
disappeared. On his return a marked change was noticeable in his
demeanor and Jesse observed that he was in constant consultation
with Dodge, from which the detective drew the inference that some
last desperate move was to be made towards the escape of the
prisoner.

On one occasion Jesse saw Bracken showing Dodge a map and some
drawings on paper, which so excited his suspicions that he followed
the two with unremitting assiduity, and within a day or two was
rewarded through Bracken's carelessness with an opportunity for
going through the latter's coat pockets in the billiard room. Here
he found a complete set of plans worked out in every detail for
spiriting the prisoner from San Antonio into Mexico during the
State Fair. These plans were very elaborate, every item having
been planned out from the purchase of tickets, and passing of
baggage through the customs, to hotel accommodation in the City of
Mexico and Tampico, and steamship tickets from Tampico to Europe.

The plan had been to secure permission from the Court for Dodge to
leave Houston long enough ostensibly to attend the fair at San
Antonio and to "lose" him during the excitement and crowded
condition of the city at that time.

It is, of course, needless to say that these plans were abandoned
when Bracken discovered that Jesse had been forewarned.

Almost immediately thereafter the Circuit Court of Appeals at Fort
Worth, Texas, decided one of the habeas corpus cases adversely to
Dodge, but it still permitted him to retain his liberty pending the
final determination of the questions involved by the Supreme Court
at Washington.

The Hummel forces were apparently losing hope, however, for early
in October another attempt was made to bribe Jesse. Bracken
entered his room one evening and informed him that he could get his
own price if he would only be a good fellow, and even went so far
as to exhibit a quantity of money which he stated was twenty-five
thousand dollars. The only result of this offer was to lead Jesse
to redouble his precautions, for he argued that the situation must
indeed be acute when such an offer could be deemed worth while.
Thereafter it was obvious that the revelry of Dodge and his
companions was on the increase. Accordingly Jesse added to his
force of assistants.

On December 2, 1904, Nathaniel Cohen, another member of the firm of
Howe and Hummel, arrived at Houston, and the next day the Supreme
Court at Washington decided the appeal in the habeas corpus against
the prisoner, who was at once ordered by Judge Burns into the
custody of United States Marshall William M. Hansen.

Things looked black indeed for Dodge and blacker still for Hummel.
How the little attorney, eating his midday lunch four thousand
miles away, at Pontin's restaurant on Franklin Street, must have
trembled in his patent leather boots! His last emissary, Cohen, at
once procured an assistant by the name of Brookman and with him
proceeded to Wharton County, Texas, where they secured a new writ
of habeas corpus and induced the local sheriff, one Rich, to swear
in a posse comitatus of one hundred men for the purpose of coming
to Houston to take the prisoner by force of arms out of the hands
of the United States Marshal.

This was one of the most daring and desperate attempts made in
recent years to frustrate the law. Jesse believes that the real
object of this posse was to precipitate a fight between themselves
and the Federal authorities. It is not inconceivable that in such
an event Dodge might either have escaped or been killed. The men
composing the posse were of the most desperate character, and
consisted largely of the so-called "feud factions" of Wharton
County, known as "The Wood Peckers" and "The Jay Birds." Jesse has
been informed, on what he regards as reliable authority, that this
move cost the Hummel forces fifteen thousand dollars and that each
member of the posse received one hundred dollars for his
contemplated services in the "rescue" of the prisoner. But civil
war, even on a small scale, cannot be indulged in without some
inkling of the facts becoming known to the authorities, and prior
to the receipt of the mandate of the Supreme Court, Judge Burns
ordered the prisoner removed to Galveston for safe keeping.

Thus the long, expensive, and arduous struggle came finally to an
end, for Judge Burns in due course ordered that Charles F. Dodge
should be conveyed to New York in the personal custody of the
United States Marshal and delivered by him to the New York
authorities "within the borders of that State." Such an order was,
of course, exceedingly unusual, if not almost unheard of, but it
was rendered absolutely necessary by the powerful influence and
resources, as well as the unscrupulous character, of those
interested in securing Dodge's disappearance.

In order to thwart any plans for releasing the prisoner by violence
or otherwise, and to prevent delay through the invoking of legal
technicalities, Hansen and Jesse decided to convey Dodge to New
York by water, and on the 16th of December the marshal and his five
deputies boarded a Mallory Line steamer at Galveston and arrived in
New York with their prisoner on the evening of December 23d.

Dodge reached New York a physical wreck. How he was induced to
tell the whole truth after he had pleaded guilty to the charge
against him is a story in itself. A complete reaction from his
dissipation now occurred and for days his life was despaired of.
Jesse, too, was, as the expression is, "all in," and the only
persons who were still able to appreciate the delights of New York
were the stalwart marshal and his boys, who for some time were
objects of interest as they strolled along Broadway and drank "deep
and hearty" in the cafes. To the assistants in the District
Attorney's office they were heroes and were treated as such.

How Dodge finally testified against Hummel on the witness stand has
already been told. As they say downtown, if Jerome had never done
anything else, he would have "made good" by locking up Abe Hummel.
No one ever believed he would do it. But Jerome never would have
locked up Hummel without Jesse. And, as Jesse says with a laugh,
leaning back in his chair and taking a long pull on his cigar, "I
guess I would not do it again--no, I WOULD not do it again for all
the money you could give me. The wonder is that I came out of it
alive." When the reader comes to think about it he will probably
agree with him.





Next: Adventures In The Secret Service Of The Post-office Department

Previous: Horror: A True Tale



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