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The day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, September 18, 1915, LAST EDITION, Image 8

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1915-09-18/ed-1/seq-8/

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Before Annie Hinrichsen, state jail
inspector, goes away from Chicago,
The Day Book asks her to read this
open letter: .
Dear Miss HinrichseSIt'8 a big job
to clean up jails or anything else in
Chicago. A short time ago Chief Jus
tice Harry Olson of the municipal
courts stated in an address to the As
sociation of Commerce that Chicago
has the filthiest jails, bar none, in this
country. Charles Dering, one of the
hallelujah boosters whose job is to
whoop It up for Chicago business, got
to his feet and in front of a lot of
people bawled out Olson.
For what? For telling a fact? No.
It's true. What then? Why for throw
ing a searchlight on Chicago' and
pointing to a rotten condition.
"It's not good for business," said
You will find, Miss Hinrichsen, if
you go through our State street de
partment stores that at least three of
them have basements where the air
is more foul than in the better jails.
If you ride on Halsted or Madison
street cars or on Milwaukee avenue
during the night or morning rush
hours in the colder months of the
year you will find ventilation and
crowding equal to what you report
in some of the crowded cages of the
police stations.
Maybe your father, who ws a
friend of Altgeld, told you, Miss Hin
richsen, how John P. Altgeld 30 years
ago, pointed at police jails in this city
with the same fierce rush of feeling
that you show. "How thousands are
arrested each year in this city as
"suspects," held in the police stink
holes and then set free, is told by Alt
geld in his book, "Live Issues." Alt
geld asked 30 years ago why so many
people who haven't got money nor
political pull should be jammed Inside
the foul walls of police jails.
Harriet Vittum, president of the
Woman's City club, a-few years ago,
gave the city government of Chicago:
platsdata, figures on cubic air space.
Miss Vittum's survey went tne wnoie
route and showed everything on po-
lice jails. On her recommendation
there has been an improvement of
maybe five per cent.
Then came Vella Martin, who was
before you in the office of state jail
inspector. She hurled the same
fierce accusations you do and the
same facts.
So you see we know our jails are
stlnkholes and we know it's a shame
to throw "suspects" and striking
waitresses and glovemakers inside
these cells. We know the conditions.
What we want you to do is throw
light on who is responsible.
If Chicago is a cheap town and
hasn't got enough decent sporting
blood to build. a set of jails that are
as clean as those of many American,
cities, we want you td tell in your re
port why .you think Chicago is a
cheap town.
Get the statements of city officials
of all parties and interests. Ask 'em
why. And The Day Book will print
your report
o o
Petrograd, Sept 18. Dr. Clarence
D. Ussher and 15 others, oomposing
missionary staff at Van, Turkish Ar
menia, pased through Petrograd on
their way to Bergen, Norway, having
had to abandon to pillage and flame
the result of 70 years' work at Van.
Mrs. Ussher died of typhus fever
shortly before the flight
rr. Wm. A. Shedch head of the
Urumiah mission, and Mrs. Lahore,
wife of one of tne missionaries, and
several other missionaries are here
homeward bound.
Another body of American mis
sionaries left here for Persia last
Van is aeain in the hands of the
Russians, who are declared to have
found the canals and trenches choked
with thousands of bodies of Arm
nianfii, '

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