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Newspaper Page Text
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ABfc, ivu xO 'iimjL 'iHE WHOLE STORY OF THE
LOOTING OF SAN FRANCISCd'BY THE 'GRAFTERS
Former Political Boss Will Write Confession, Telling "Big
Business" Bought Governors, Supreme Judges,
y Mayors, and City Councils.
San Francisco, April 8. What
will be, perhaps, the most remark
able public document of America
soon is to be given to the public.
Abe Ruef, former political boss
of San Francisco, and now a felon
in San Quentin state penitentiary,
known merely by a number, is to
write the inside story of his life
""and political crookedness and of
the lives and political crookedness
of those who joined with him in
the looting of a great city.
His story will be in detail. It
will involve many a member of
the "400" of California, and it will
involve "Big Business" men and
politicians from James N. Gillett,
former governor of the state, and
justices of the supreme court,
down to the meanest of the old
San Francisco ward heelers.
To realize just what Ruef s
story will mean it is necessary to
recall the San Francisco situation.
Other American cities than
San Francisco have been looted;
but none ever was looted more
thoroughly. In no place was the
alliance between "Big Business"
and the politicians more criminal
The Southern Pacific railroad,
the San Francisco Gas and Elec
tric company, the United Rail
roads of San Francisco and the
other public utility corporations
of the city, bought mayors and
supervisors and aldermen as -a
housewife buys groceries.
Ruef and Eugene E. Schmitz,
then mayor of the city, were so
bold in their rottenness that they
opened a "municipal" resort. It
was a huge concrete building at
620 Jackson street on the Barbary
coast. There were city police
men stationed' at its doors, and in
its counting office, and there were
two hundred women of ill fame
within, the profits of whose
shame went into the pockets of
the mayor and the boss of the
Nor was it in San Francisco
alone that bribery and corruption
stalked. The whole state was rot
ten with it.
James N. Gillett, former gov
ernor, was the tool of the South
em Pacific railroad.
The decisions of the state stf
preme court in "important cases
were telephoned to the offices "of
the Southern Pacific for that cor
poration's approval befbre being
handed down. On several occa
sions the supreme court reversed
itself on the order of the rail
road. And Ruef was in the thick of
all this. Indeed, so far as San
Francisco was concerned, he was
the hub of it.
When a public service corpora
tion wished to cheat the people
out of a franchise, its representa
tives went to Ruef. 'When a man
. .v -y .- .