OCR Interpretation

Water Valley progress. (Water Valley, Miss.) 1882-1918, December 02, 1905, Image 3

Image and text provided by Mississippi Department of Archives and History

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn87065501/1905-12-02/ed-1/seq-3/

What is OCR?

Thumbnail for

Traffic in Young Women in
America Is Disclosed.
Lured to Dens in Chicago on Various Pre
texts and Taken to Orient by Ring of De
ceiving Females—Astounding Prac
tice Bared by Secret Serv
ice Officials.
Chicago.—Recent astounding dis
closures have brought to light the fact
that a traffic in human lives has been
going on for some time in this coun
try and that this city has been the
recruiting point. Young American
girls have been lured from home and
friends under various pretexts and
sold into living deaths in Chinese
They are employed as “secretaries1'
and “traveling companions,’’ with
promises of big wages and the pay
ment of all traveling expenses. Once
within China they are delivered to
those who have paid in advance for
them, only to be hurried to the in
terior beyond the reach of civilization,
to pass their lives in hopeless despair,
the absolute slaves of merciless mas
ters free from the restraint of all law
and accountable to no one for their
victims’ lives.
Local police and federal secret serv
ice officials who uncovered the opera
tions of those engaged in deporting
the girls were surprised at the
extent and ramifications of the
system they unearthed. Instead
of involving a few women and
the deporting of a few girls, it is now
admitted the Investigators are on the
track of half a score of traffickers,
and the number of girls lured from
home may exceed 100 in Chicago
alone, to say nothing of the extent
of the operations of the ring in other
sections of the United States and Can
Two of the intended victims of th?
traffic escaped from their captors after
arriving in Shanghai. They told an
officer of the American navy their ex
periences and about the fate of their
former companions. It is possible de
mands for the liberation of the young
The dealer who delivered the girls
into their slavery resides in Chicago
and has a woman confederate in
Shanghai, China, who Is also known
to the government secret service
These astounding facts were dis
closed by the local immigration bu
reau, which received complaint of the
sale of Louise Miller, a girl from Mon
treal, Canada, to the agent of a Chi
nese nfflcia' in Shanghai.
Other evidence obtained indicated
that Eva Campeau, Maggie Drouin and
Victoria Stamour, three waitresses
who were induced to come to Chicago
in February, 1901, from Montreal, may
have met the same fate. These girls
were employed in the Hotel de Villa.
Montreal. Two French women stopped
at the hotel as guests. They engaged
the girls to come to Chicago and lured
them to a resort. The young women
were rescued from the dive and re
turned to their homes. Later it is re
ported they again disappeared. The
circumstances of their second disap
pearance from home are supposed to
have been a second visit /from the
French women, who pretended to de
sire to make reparation and then sent
the girls to China for the dual pur
pose of getting a price of $500 apiece
for them and sending dangerous wit
nesses against themselves out of the
Chicago Girls Among captives.
The names of ten more young wom
en that have disappeared from homes
in Chicago and other American cities
and were shipped to Shanghai are in
the possession of the Inspector of the
Chinese immigration bureau. The po
lice of this and other cities are gath
ering evidence against the promoters
of the slavery and their prosecution
^ ft
siLfcrm mrtSLms
Vh/iAbU nrun/M mamtaaLUM/tujnjAunu
•women by the American consul may
make the affair international.
Astounding Facts Disclosed.
Forty-nine American girls have been
sold into life slavery in Chinese
harems. Most of the white slaves de
lrvered into the hands of Chinese mas
ters are lost to civilization and can
hope for no escape from their bond
age save by suicide. They are help
less prisoners in Chinese interior
tojvns subject to the whims of man
darins and wealthy Chinamen who
we^e enabled to purchase, them
through connivance with a womau
whose identity is well kuown to the
government authorities.
will follow. On this point the govern
ment agents say they must rely on
the police and state*authorities, since
there is no national law against ex
porting women for such purposes.
American Consul James L. Rodgers,
at Shanghai, has enlisted the coopera
tion of the English and Chinese au
thorities in that city, and evidence of
many sales of American and Canadian
girls to Chinese masters has been pro
cured. i
The authorities have unquestionable
proof of the incerceration in Chinese
harems of at least a dozen of the girls
who were shipped from Chicago. Hil
da Olson, aged 21), is said to have com
mltted suicide on arriving at Shan
ghai in order to escape the fate of be
ing a slave to a Chinese master.
Others were shipped to interior towns,
where they were held by one master
after another, until they were finally
fold to Chinese, who took them so far
into the interior they could not be
The horror of the situation of the
girls, all of whom are young and were
selected because of their beauty, can
be imagined when it is known that
the Chinese purchasers own them as
chattel slaves, may sell them to
other**, or may keep them as long as
they please, and in event of their dis
pleasure order their heads cut off, all
without incurring the risk of trial or
Prices for Girls Vary.
The fixed price for Chinese girl
slaves at Shanghai is from $250 to
$400. The price paid by the Chinese
men for the American girls betrayed
into their hands by the two women
engaged in the traffic varies from $500
to $1,000 apiece. A young woman of
special beauty and accomplishment
press the traffic until the federal au
thorities acted In this Instance, send
ing the police of Chicago, New York
and 3an Francisco into action simul
It is believed that exposure will of
Itself bring the operations of the slave
traders to an end, save in the cases
of the very ignorant. Punishment be
fitting the enormity of the crimes that
have been committed is doubtful, both
because of the absence of specific laws
meeting the situation and the fact that
most of the offenders have placed the
Pacific ocean between them-selves and
“It is true this sort of thing has
been going on for some time,’’ said
Chief' Collins. “I have detectives
working on the case now and expect
to do something before long. The in
formation came to me from Washing
ton first, and I then took the case up
with the government officers here, but
they could do nothing. I don’t care
to state what our next move will be."
One Woman Suspected.
One woman against whom positive
evidence has been gathered as a cen
brings a higher price than a plainer
and less accomplished one.
The “levee” section of the North
side seems to be the headquarters of
the “slave” traders. Detectives and
secret service officers have Investigated
a number of externally unpretentious
houses and have discovered conditions
they never believed could exist. To
step within the portals of these houses
is like being transported to the orient.
Rich rugs, tapestry, Chinese and Jap
anese bric-a-brac, virgin gold and jade
ware studded with diamonds and pre
cious stones, greet the eye of the vis
Lured by Tales of Wealth.
It is into these dens of splendor that
unsuspecting girls have been lured.
Wild tales of the wealth and pleasures
that will be theirs in the orient are
poured into the startled ears of tho
girls by women so schooled that the
unsuspecting victims really believe the
glowing promises that are made.
“You will find scores of wealthy
merchants and business men in Chi
nese cities who are far from home,”
say the Receivers. “They are seeking
wives from their own land.”
Another story is that wealthy orien
tals want American companions and
governesses for their children who are
to be trained for college courses in
the big universities of this country.
Traffic a Surprise.
That Chicago has been used as a
recruiting station for the resorts of
the treaty ports and the frequently
visited spots of the orient has long
been known to the under world, whose
women have been regaled by stories
of the palaces maintained by those of
their* kind in the celestial kingdom.
Year after year a group of women
formerly identified with Chicago’s
dark side have visited the city and
departed with a band of these women,
who have never been heard of after
Despite all this, the knowledge that
girls are being sold into actual slav
ery and that the young and inexperi
enced are being lured from home to
supply the demand for white slaves
came as a startling surprise.
More than a year ago an inkling of
the system and its extent reached the
local police, and from time to time
the atrocities practiced by the inter
national band of 3lave traders caused
a ripple. Nothin?; wras done, however,
to investigate the situation and sup
tral figure in this system of kidnap
ing, abduction and sale into slavery
is the wife of a recently deceased
bookmaker. Several others are wom
en who formerly conducted resorts in
Chicago and now make their homes
in Chinese treaty ports.
While 40 cases are charged against
the former, the latter are said to have
recruited hundreds who have entered
upon a living death from which there
is no possibility of escape save by
The wife of the bookmaker, when
questioned, indignantly denied the
charges. She lives in a splendid apart
ment and is supposed to be wealthy.
"The charges against me are prepos
terous,” she said. “I cannot imagine
how they originated. I have been to
China once. Then I visited a married
lady friend in Hongkong. There is a
delightful colony of Americans in
Hongkong. I found life there charm
ing. Most American women who go
there do. There is much wealtn and
money is spent freely. But white
women no more associate with Chinese
there than they do here. I never
heard of any American women being
married to Chinese there.
"As for my being connected with a
band of slave traders, the charge is
absurd. On my only voyage I was
unaccompanied. I have never sent
anyone there.
“I have told stories of the fine cli
mate and of the splendid times wom
en have there, but I do not know of
anyone who has been influenced to go
by my yarns.
• X •_ 1 . 1. __ 1_
1 wu ui liiy li icuuo uavc uccu
dragged into this scandal. One is the
wife of a German banker and the other
the wife of a merchant. Both were
Chicago women. They went to China
as single women and married there.
Every summer they come back to Chi
cago and stay with me at my flat.
They make this trip to escape the
heated term in the orient. They are
wealthy women, and left only a few
days ago after a month’s visit with
me. I have never heard of any women
returning to China with them.
“I know of a large number of Chi
cago women of legal age who have
gone to China during the last few
years and secured wealthy husbands,”
she said. “It is their own business
and I don’t see why the authorities
should raise any objections to their
going. They are surely better off than
they would be here.”
I "Do they marry Chinese?" she wai
“Oh, no; they marry white men.
There are thousands of single white
mco in the Chinese cities who want
wives from their own lands.”
The woman in question, it is said,
takes periodical trips to China and
receives and entertains women vis
itors from the orient in the United
States, ostensibly to enjoy vacations
during (he heated term in the Chi
nese city. The visitors, it is declared,
are the women who do the actual work
of transporting the girls from Amer
ica to China at so much apiece. They
visit San Francisco, New York, Phila
delphia, Montreal, and every large city
where it is possible for them to pur
sue their nefarious vocations without
too much police interference. Tho
woman does not deny her oriental ac
quaintances, but she does deny that
girls are obtained by her and sent to
naru iu xvca^a vucuucio.
Washington officials first notified the
local authorities of the nefarious prac
tice which was going on, as there is
no federal law under which punish
ment could be meted out to the of
fenders. They can be reached, how
ever, under an Illinois law, and if
sufficient evidence can be obtained the
guilty one can be sent to the peni
tentiary on the charge of abduction.
The difficulty which has prevented
the officials from taking action is
that the victims shipped out of the
country never return to tell the tale.
At Hongkong or some other Chinese
port they are met by agents of the
band and sold into slavery in the in
terior far beyond the pale of Euro
pean and American civilization that
fringes the seacoast.
A number of persons have been sent
to the penitentiary under the federal
statutes for importing women into
the United States, but the autnorities
have never been able to reach persons
operating in* the other direction.
The Evidence Was Convincing, But
the Sensation Was Host
They were talking about “God’s
country” and ’possum hunting, when
Charles Hopkins told this one, says
the Philadelphia Record: “An old
darkey I knew in North Carolina loved
to go ’possum hunting by himself. He
always took along a little frying pan
and a little bag of sweet potatoes.
Whenever he caught a ’possum he
would build a fire right there and cook
his catch with his sweet potatoes.
“One night, when he had caught his
animal and was cooking it he fell
asleep before the fire. Another negro,
a youngster, who was also hunting,
but who had caught nothing, scented
the savory dish from afar and followed
his nose until he discovered Uncle
Karey asleep with the ’possum before
him, done to a turn. The young darky
sat down and ate the ’possum, while
Uncle Karey dreamed on, and piled
the bones between the old man’s foet.
“When the last vestige was gone he
smeared the gravy from the pan on
the old man’s fingers and on hie
mouth. Then he deaprted.
“The noise of his going awoke Un
cle Karey and he soliloquized thus*
“ ‘Now, I wonders ef I done et dat
’possum? Dat ’possum graby on my
fingers and dat ’possum graby on my
mouf. I sho’ is doen et dat ’possum
and nebber knowed it. But, 'fore God,
dat wuz the mos’ unfillinest ’pos3um
dis nigger eber et.’ ”
The Automobile Terror.
There is a certain kindly old lady
in an eastern town who scaively
knows what it is to be addressed a?
“Mrs. Tompkins,” the appellation
which is hers by right, since tor years
she has been “grandma,” not only to
a flock of grandchildren, but to the
whole community as well. She lives
in a quiet little hamlet where even the
automobile does not often penetrate.
Recently she visited a nephew who
lives in Newport, where the motor car
is, to put it mildly, not unknown. Re
turning. a friend said to her: "Well,
grandma, I see you’re back from New
port all safe and sound.” “Yes, I am.”
returned the old lady, firmly, “but I
tell you one has to be mighty careful
down there. WThy, do you knov,, I
reached the point where I didn’t get
out of bed in the morning without first
looking around the room for auto
In the Shoe Store.
"How is it,” asked the visitor, "that
all your clerks nearly break their
necks to wait on Mrs. Gotrox? You
don’t permit tipping, do you?”
“No,” replied the proprietor, “it’a
this way. She has a No, 4 foot.”
“And she’s willing to take a No. 4
shoe.”—Chicago Sun.
Amber in New York City.
Large masses of amber have recent
ly been discovered in cretaceous strata
on Staten Island, now the borough of
Richmond of the city of New York. Th*
deposits are being commercially worked.
It is thought that some of this amber
may be the product of sequoia-tree*
that grew on the Atlantic coast in cr*
tacsotis time.—Youth’s Compac.’’oa.

xml | txt