Haymarket Affair Digital Collection

Illinois vs. August Spies et al. trial transcript no. 1.
Testimony of Charles R. Tuttle, 1886 July 27.

Volume K, 170-179, 10 p.
Tuttle, Charles R.
Reporter, Chicago Times.

Direct examination by Mr. Grinnell. Cross-examination by Mr. Foster. Testified on behalf of the Prosecution, People of the State of Illinois.

Attended the Haymarket meeting. Testified on various topics (page numbers provide a partial guide): weapons and explosives (vol.K 173), McCormick Reaper Works strike, meeting or riot (vol.K 172), Zepf's Hall (vol.K 170), movement, position or tenor of the crowd (vol.K 171), Parsons, Albert (vol.K 170), Parsons' speech at Haymarket (vol.K 172).

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a witness called and sworn on behalf of the people; was examined in chief by Mr. Grinnell and testifies as follows:

Q What is your name?

A. Charles R. Tuttle.

Q Were you reporter on the Times?

A. Yes sir.

Q Were you present at the hay-market meeting on May 4th last?

A. I was there a short time.

Q Whom did you go down with?

A. I went from Zepf's Hall, corner of Lake & Desplaines St. to the meeting with Mr. Allen, reporter of the Times.

Q Did Mr. Allen point out to you any of the individuals, any of the defendants?

A. Yes sir, he pointed out the speaker.

Q Who was speaking when you got down there?

A. Mr. Parsons.

Q What did he say?

A. Well I could give you but very little of what he said, because we were a portion of the time on the northern outskirts of the crowd, and the meeting was turbulent or noisy and it was difficult to catch the connection between one point and another; and we only stayed

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about 3 or 4 minutes.

Q You were not there to take that meeting?

A. No sir I was assigned--

Q You were assigned to the carpenter's meeting.?

A. To the meeting on Lake St., but we were at the meeting I should think 15, or possibly 20 minutes, and we were close to Mr. Parsons about 3 or 4 minutes or perhaps 5. He took me up to the stand to show me the socialists, as he called them and to show me Mrs. Parsons. I had never been at a socialistic meeting in my life, and was anxious to hear what they had to say, but did not hear a great deal of it.

Q What was the temper of that crowd, its conduct in reference to those that were on the out skirts of the crowd and those that were nearer the speaker--how was it?

A. I should say that the crowd was made up of two classes of persons, and the majority of them were opposed to the sentiments of the speaker, and a minority of those present who were a good deal more enthusiastic than the speaker himself.

Q Where was this crowd that was enthusiastic near the wagon or around it?

A. Forming a semi-circle around the speakers' wagon on the south west, and some were on the north of the wagon.

Q Was that an excited crowd or not--how did they appear and act?

A. I don't know how to describe them. They were

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very enthusiastic, they were very demonstrative.

Q What did you hear Parsons say?

A. I remember of following him through a series of references to existing strikes. One was the south western strike, and to Jay Gould the head of that system of railways, and that created, the winding up of the peroration in connection with that it created a great deal of excitement and many responses from the audience, then he referred to some strike in New York I think. I cannot undertake to say what he said about this south western strike, any more than that he mentioned the name of Mr. Gould. He referred to that strike, that is the best I can tell you. I didn't hear very much what he said about it because I stood on the sidewalk on the east side of Desplaines about half way between the speakers wagon and the wagon upon which Mrs. Parsons was sitting, and therefore the crowd being mostly west of me, the speaker's back was turned to me, and a great deal of the time it was difficult for me to hear what he was saying. But he concluded the series of references to existing strikes by speaking of the strike at McCormick's and detailing the suffering of the people who had wives and children, and who were being robbed by one whom I took to be Mr. McCormick, although I cannot say that is the idea, who were being robbed any way through capitalists; and he said it was no wonder

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that these persons were struggling for their rights; and then said that the police had been called out by the capiialists to prevent or to suppress the first indication of any movement on the part of the working people to stand up for their rights, or something to that effect. There was then considerable demonstration on the part of the audience. Always I noticed there were two classes, those who seemed to be against what he said, and those who were rather more enthuciastis than himself. And he stated it this way: "What will you do"? or "What are you going to do?" But now what it was about I can't tell, but it was in connection with this reference that he made to McCormicks. The same parties who had spoken when he referred to Gould, I think the same, one of them any way, because I had my eye on him for 2 or 3 minutes, two minutes I should say. I think I could describe the man, and would know him if I saw him: he stuck up his hand like that (illustrating) with a revolver in it and said "We will shoot the devils" or some such expression. And I saw 2 others sticking up there hands near to him who made similar expressions, and had what I took to be at that time revolvers: but this one man I speak of I took particular notice of him, and remember his appearance, and saw his revolver very plainly in his right hand; and he grasped it about the centre of the weapon and stuck it up in front

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of the speaker. And then I went away. I had stepped from Mr. Allen, I had stepped down to see Mrs. Parsons, and had stepped in between the 2 wagons, and when this demonstration occurred I walked back and we went over to Zeph's Hall and I went about my business, and that is all I can remember about it.

Q Where were you when you heard the explosion of the bomb?

A I heard what I took to be the explosion of the bomb not at the time I heard it, but what I have since taken to be the explosion of the bomb, the report of it, on a car on the Randolph St. bridge. I was going to the Times office with my report from the furniture workers meeting at 54 W. Lake St.


Q You say they were turbulent or noisy, that is, were they any different from what you saw at political meetings?

A Not any different in the degree of demonstration.

Q Not any different in the degree of demonstration.

A No sir, not any different in the amount of noise.

Q You say you were within 3 or 4 minutes, within hearing distance probably 3 or 4 minutes where you could distinctly hear.

A. I don't think I was longer than 5 and think it would not exceed 3 or 4.

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Q Did you hear the expression by any person when reference was made to Jay Gould "Throw him in the lake", or something of that kind?

A. I don't recollect that throwing him in the lake.

Q Nor "Hang him"?

A. I don't think I heard that?

Q Do you remember the response that came from Mr. Parsons "No that is useless", no use in doing any thing of that kind.

A It strikes me when the references were being made to the south western strike, we were pressing our way through the crowd to get closer to the speakers. There was a good deal of noise, but I cannot describe very well what was said except that one man.

Q I am speaking now about what Parsons say---did Parsons say "no"

A. I did not hear that.

Q Mr. Allen was right with you wasn't he?

A. Not at just the period I speak of. He was standing on the sidewalk I left him on the sidewlk close to the building, and I stepped down close to the wagon on which Mrs. Parsons was sitting, and then passed between the two wagons, and was perhaps three minutes, perhaps not that long, would not like to be certain about the time was 20 or 30 feet away from him.

Q When he came to the McCormick matter you say he said that the very first action of the people, the first gathering of the people to give expressions to their rights, or at leost to stand up for their rights, as he expressed it, was

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suppressed by the police.

A. That seemed to be the substance of his remark in that connection.

Q Was there anything said about what was done at McCormicks, that you can remember now?

A. i should dislike to try to put in any form what he said.

Q What was your idea, that you gathered?

A. His references to McCormicks was that which created more expressions of hostility towards him and expressions in favor of him than anything else I heard. It brough in the audience a confusion.

Q That was the expression as you stated that the very first move on the part of the laboring man to stand up for their rights was suppressed by the police.

A. I would not wish to confine it to that.

Q That was the idea?

A. That was one of the ideas.

Q That is all y u can remember of?

A. All that I can put in any shape that would resemble the shape he put it in to.

Q Where were you standing at the time this man held up the revolver?

A. I was within five or six feet of him.

Q When the man held up the revolver where were you in reference to Mr. Parsons who was speaking?

A. I should say directly north of him.

Q Was his side to you or his back to you?

A. He moves

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about very much when he speaks. He would not have anything to you more than a second, or half a second. He is very demonstrative.

Q Was that remark made by any one that you recognize as any of the defendants?

A. No sir, I would recognize that man that had the revolver I think.

Q You recognized the fact then that he was not one of the defendants here in this row.

A. No he is not one.

Q Did that remark meet the ear of the speaker?

A. No sir.

Q There was no response to that on the part of Mr. Parsons that you heard?

A. No sir.

Q Or in any way to the suggestion made or the motion made by this man who had the revolver?

A. No sir, not in any way that I saw.

Q You don't know that he either saw him or heard any exclamation from him?

A. I don't know by any action of his that he saw him, but he stood about 15 feet north west of Mr. Parsons.

Q Mr. Parsons, at the time this man made the remark, was going on with his speach to the crowd, and speaking as any man does?

A. Mr. Parsons has the habit, or had that night of making a point, and then coming to a pause, and allowing it to have its effect, before he would disturb the effect by further declamation.

Q Was it during one of these pauses that this man made

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the statement, or was Mr. Parsons speaking or do you know?

A I should say, Yes sir I know. I should think this demonstration was at the completion of his reference to the McCormick matter, and I should think a quarter of a minute was occupied in demonstration. There were persons who denounced in some manner by expression as is customary in meetings like that, who were opposed apparently; and then these persons who were near---

Q So then when Mr. Parsons had paused for the point to take effect, so as not to interfere with the effect of the statement, during that pause there were expressions of applause or disapproval going on?

A. Yes sir.

Q So then what this man said when this man said when he had his revolver in his hand probably might have been drowned by the speaker or expressions made by others round or about him.

A. Quite so because he did not speak extremely loud and there were others speaking in a similar way. I saw within two or three or four five seconds we will say, three persons do that, all of them giving vent to some similar expression.

Q Did any of them attract the attention of Mr. Parsons?

A Not that I know of.

Q Or the comments of Mr. Parsons that you know?

A I could not say.

Q Do you know whether this was toward the close?

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A I am quite clear of that and when I saw those revolvers I felt like getting away.

Q It was near the close?

A. I was going to explain how I know.

Q It don't make any difference how you know. You were not there when Mr. Fielden was introduced?

A. No.

Q Nor during any part of the 20 minutes?

A. I was walking away when the change took place between the speakers.

Q You were not there during any of the 20 minutes or half hour Fielden spoke?

A. I did not hear him speak at all, did not see him when he was speaking. I saw him before that.

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