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Devoted to the Interests of the Farmers' Alliance and Industrial Union and Other Kindred Organizations.
VOL. III. NO. 22. TOPEKA, KANSAS, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 20, 1892. $1.00 PER YEAR. THE OTHER SIDE OP THE STEVEN'S COUNTY TROUBLE. To the Editor of The Advocate. As the associated press dispatches sent from the southwestern part of the state have charged that the Citizens' Alliances of tha section of the country are respon sible for the murder of Sheriff Dunn, and as Botkln and his friends have claimed through the press that there are some seven or eight Citizens' Alliance organiza tions cattered over his judicial district, in which the conspiracy to kill him has been planned, let us look now at the aide that has not appeared in print so - far. As the state secretary of the old State Citizens' Alliance, the open organi zation, and as national secretary of the national organization, the secret organiz ation, I am in possession of the hooks of both organizations, and know that the only organization of Citizens' Alliances that was ever organized in southwestern Kansas, and chartered from either state or national office, Is the one located at Springfield, that was organized last August by a lecturer of the Farmers' Alliance, and its membership was com posed of the different members of the Farmers' Alliance that were scattered over Seward county, who had come in to attend the meeting of the county Alli ance. Thus far for the Citizens' Alliance. Now let us look back at the impeach ment proceedings before the House of Representatives for the Impeachment of Botkln. Who were pushing the im peachment and furnishing tho testimony? The leading citizens for morality, sobrie- ty, and all lovers of good order, irrespect ive of party, In his judicial district, were urging his impeachment, and among whom were the chairmen of the Repub lican central committees of three coun ties in that judicial district, all pressing forward and urging upon the legislature that they be redeemed from his robbery, tyrrany and debauchery. The fact of Its being the best people of his judicial district working for hla Impeachment was entirely lost sight of by the people of this state, because the Republican pa pen of the state, In their desire to pro tect him, give forth to the world that it was a prosecution of Botkin by Col. S. N. Wood for political purposes, and thii was as far as the Republican papers would print, while the truth was, that a treaty of peace had been arranged be tween CoL Wood and Botkln before this In Topeka, hands had been clasped, and Colonel Wood had nothing whatsoever to do with the impeachment trial In any shape or manner. Now, how did Botkln and his friends carry out the treaty of peace? While the impeachment trial was pending, and Colonel wood was away from Topeka at tending court, Botkln told John R. Gar rison, in his room in a Topeka hotel: "If I can ever get Sam Wood to Hugo he will never get out alive, as all arrange ments are made to kill him there." The readers of the dally papers In To peka all know the stepsthat were taken before Botkln's impeachment to have Colonel Wood arrested on fictitious war rants, to take him to No Man's Land and murder him, and how Colonel Wood had to secure the protection of the district court of Shawnee county, by injunction, to prevent their murdering him under the authority of the law while having him under arrest, by arresting him under a warrant, obtaining possession of his body, and then taking him from Topeka to where they could kill him, in the southwestern part of Kansas, and make the claim that he was trying to escape by violence, and they had to kill him in 'sell defense. Again, at one time In Ulyses, while court was In session, a prominent citizen of southwestern Kansas went into Bot kln's room in the hotel on business, and saw Winchesters and revolvers In a large number upon Botkln's bed and standing around the room. On Inquiring of Bot kin what those arms were for, Botkln replied: "By God, Sam Wood ba got to die before he he leaves this town." That same night an attempt was made to break into Colonel Wood's room, at an other hotel, but the door being barricad ed the attempt was unsuccessful, but enough noise was made to awaken the landlady, and she saw four men retreat ing from the house, and she believes she recognized in those four men Pitzer, now Berennan's attorney; O'Connor, county attorney of Stevens county; Hugh Day and James Brennan, Colonel Wood's muderers of a later date. Again, W. II. Wakefield, editor of the JeffersonUn, claims that he was told b Patrick II. Coney, of Topeka, on the 4th day of June, as follows (now remember this was before the death of Colonel Wood): "The people of Hugoton have been instructed to shoot Sam Woood on sight, and you will see that they will do V, and that no one will ever be punished for it, either." Now, what took place at Hugoton the the day Colonel Wood was killed? But before reciting the events of Colonel Wood's murder, following the facta that I have stated, I wish to call attention to the expression of Governor Humphrey, as quoted by the State Journal, in which the governor said: "I expect Woou'a fol lowers charge that Botkin was in a meas ure responsible for the murder of Wood by Brennan, and without any reason for such a statement or charge." Now, in the light of that statement of the gov ernor, let us review what took place at Hugoton at the time of Colonel Wood's death. Court had been opened that morning; Colonel Wood was under bonds to appear there; Botkin'a gang from the dlffent parts of that judicial district were together at Hugoton at half past 10 o'clock. Colonel Wood and wife are seen approaching the court house. Botkln immediately adjourns court. 0Connor and Pitzer are seen walking away arm In arm. As Colonel Wood en tors the building used for the courthouse, Botkln comes out, speaks In terms of greatest friendship to Brennan, saying: 'Hello, Jimmie," and steps outside of the door, walks to the bug$y and shakes hands with Mrs. Wood.wbo was a perfect stranger to him, and makes a search of of the buggy to see if aoy arms were there, and then follows O'Connor and Pitzer away from the court room, and a few minutes later Colonel Wood conies out of the court house, passes Brennan, steps down the steps upon the ground; then the dastardly coward steps forward and shoots him in the back, aid follows him up and completes the deed with two other shots. As soon as Colonel Wood is shot Bot kin returns upon the scene and says in a tone of feigned surprise: "Now, I want to know who is to blame for this; I want to know just where the blame belongs," and Immediately adjourns the court until September. How did Botkln and his friends finish this day. Why, they all repaired to Ar kalon and wound up the day with a drunken debauch, and while the carous ing was at Its height, Sam Dunn, the sheriff who was lately murdered, In a tone of boasting, said: "There are two or three right here In this town that we are going to get, and have got to go next Van Voorhes will be the first one, and there la one at Liberal that will be the next; he is Jim Beaucharop; a Democrat U after him; it Isn't Botkin; Botkln li a Republican." Will Governor Humphrey please explain what Dunn meant when he said, "It isn't Botkln; Botkin is a Republcan?,' When Dunn returned home he told a certain person that "Brennan shot Sam Wood in self defense" and on the reply, "You know that Is a lie," he laughed and said: "It don't matter; we will get enough to swear to it to clear him." Wby was Bot kin offended because the militia was sent down there, instead of arms and ammu nition? The only reasonable answer to be given is, that he wanted to arm hit gang of cutthroats to reap hla vengenca upon his enemies in that judicial dis trict. As one who has never bad any connec tion with either of the factions of southwestern Kansas, one who nas never been within either of the southwestern six counties of Kansas, but one of those who have been gathering the evidence of the conspiracy that was entered Into to kill Colonel Wood, I, as an attorney, plainly and calmly say, that in my can did belief, enough evidence has been gathered (if Botkln retires from the judgeship, that he no longer has power to Intimidate and terrorize those who know the facts of the conspiracy, so that they will come Into court and testify as they have given their evidence to us), that Botkln and all his gang can be con victed in a court of justice of the con spiracy to murder Colonel Wood, and that they selected James Brennan as the tool to do the dee,d under the pledge of judicial protection. While Colonel Wood was living ha al ways used his influence to prevent his friends arming themselves, and taking the defense of their lives In their own I hands, and at the time of his death there were very few firearms in the possession of his friends in southwestern Kansas, as he always pleaded with his friends to rely upon the laws of our country to do them justice, and always said that the laws of Kanras would redress their wrongs; but when their champion was stricken down by the hand of the assas sin, then the law and order people of southwestern Kansas were compelled to arm themselves for self defense, and If, Instead of trying to make political capital for the Republican party out of this sec ond crime, the murder of Dunn, by charging it upon the Citizens' Alliance, it would be far better If Governor Hum phrey and the other Republican leaders of the state would not seek to apologise for the acts of Botkln and the members of his gang; if they, the said leaders, In stead of finding excuses for the red handed criminals, who are responsible for the murder of Colonel Wood, would lend their eff irta to bring them to trial at the bar of justice, and not try to shield these outlaws by apologies for them, and trying to make the people be lieve that the widow of Colonel Wood has been taking part with conspirators to take revenge upon the murderers who planned the murder of her husband, tha Stevens county troubles could be quickly ended, and our state would no longer need to bluh for such deed of violence as the murder of Wood and Dunn, with the proepeotg of the perpetrators going unpunished. W. P. Riohtvtrx, Secretary Citizens' Alliance,