Haymarket Affair Digital Collection

Illinois vs. August Spies et al. trial transcript no. 1
Testimony of C. J. Schaefer, 1886 Aug. 10.

Volume N, 259-266, 8 p.
Schaefer, C. J.
Police Officer, Des Moines Police Department.

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

Testified as to Harry Gilmer's general reputation for truth and veracity. Testified on various topics (page numbers provide a partial guide): Gilmer, Harry (vol.N 173).

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

Q What is your name?

A C. J. Schaefer.

Q Where do you reside?

A City of DesMoines, Iowa.

Q How long have you lived in Des Moines?

A First went there in 1876 and off and on since that.

Q What is your business?

A Policeman.

Q How long have you been a policeman there?

A Nearly nine years.

Q Did you know Harry L. Gilmer when he lived in DesMoines?

A I did.

Q Did you know his reputation among his acquaintances and relations for truth and veracity?

A I did.

Q Was it good or bad?

A Good.

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Q Would you believe him under oath?

A I would.

Mr. Foster.

Q What did you say your name was?

A C. J. Schaefer.

Q When did you know Mr. Gilmer?

A I got acquainted with Mr/ Gilmer in 1876 about the time he went on the force there as special officer.

Q He was on the force as special officer?

A Yes--I brought something here to show you that he was, if you want to see it.

Q Who told you to get that?

A Nobody.

Q Was that all the time he was there?

A Yes sir, That was the time when the centennial was---we had big doings at that time.

Q How long was he on the force?

A I couldn't say he was off and on when we needed any officer.

Q He was a kind of a detective officer?

A Not that I know of.

Q He was not dressed in uniform?

A No sir, no more than any other.

Q Special policemen are never dressed in uniform?

A No sir.

Q He wasone of these odd job policemen?

A He seemed to be busy at work in the city, and when we called on him for assistance, he generally went to work.

Q Was he a kind of a man around town a good deal.?

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A I would hardly ever see him around--if he had no work he would be around.

Q He was around a good deal?

A No more than any other citizen.

Q He had a kind of hankering for such duties?

A I couldm't say whether he had or not.

Q Where did you live at that time?

A I lived on walnut street, in 1876 I lived on Tenth and Cherry Street.

Q Which is Cherry Street?

A Right the first street north of the Rock Island railroad.

Q North of the Rock Island depot?

A No sir the railroad runs east and west, and the street numbers from the river.

Q That would be south of Walnut street?

A Yes sir.

Q How many blocks South?

A It would be three blocks.

Q Three blocks south?

A Yes sir.

Q Did you know where Mr. Gilmer lived?

A Yes sir.

Q How far did he live from where you lived?

A Well, he lived--I won't say positive whether he lived there at that time or not, but I know where his wife died, that was on Tenth and Park.

Q How far would that be from where you lived?

A It would be ten blocks north of the Rock Island railroad--that would make it nine blocks from where I lived.

Q A little over half a mile between half a mile and a

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A Yes sir.

Q Did you ever visit at his house?

A No sir.

Q Or he at yours?

A No sir, nor more than he did a job of work for me.

Q Painted for you?

A Yes sir.

Q He wasn't a prominent citizen there I suppose--he was a man that painted occasionally and once in a while did a little police duty?

A I don't know what you call prominent citizen---he lived there and voted there and I should think that would make him prominent citizen.

Q He was prominent, probably the tallest man in Des Moines.

A Pretty good length.

Q Did you ever inquire among his associates living in that neighborhood where he resided, neighbors living at about the street on which he lived across the street within several blocks around?

A At that time?

Q At that time?

A No sir, I don't know that I did.

Q What he has been doing in the last ten years or since he came away from DesMoines you know nothing?

A I know nothing about.

Q Have you ever seen him since the year 1876 or '77 down to the present time?

A I saw him---I couldn't really state the date he left, but from the time he left to come here, I see him to-day for the first time.

Q Who foots the bills---Who foots this for your coming here?

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A I don't know who foots it. I suppose I will be paid for it.

MR. GRINNELL: The State Mr. Foster.

MR. FOSTER: Q You paid your own fair, did you?

A I did.

Q Have not got it back yet?

A No sir.

Q At that time his reputation as a man was not under consideration, was it, in Des Moines.

A I never heard it questioned.

Q did you ever hear it under discussion?

A No sir.

Q You never heard the question asked as to whether he was a truthful man or not?

A No sir, no more than any other citizen.

Q Did you ever know him to be a witness in Des Moines?

A No sir, I couldn't say that.

Q You don't know that there was any occasion for ever making up the man's record?

A No sir, I don't think there was.

Q While he lived in Des Moines, you don't know of any occasion for looking up his record?

A No sir.

Q You don't know whether he ever testified as a witness?

A I could not say whether he did or not.

Q You don't know whether he was truthful or untruthful?

A No more than I took him as a citizen of our city.

Q You simply knew him as a painter and lived within half a mile of him?

A And seeing him, that is when he was on special duty. Then he did some work for me. I built a new

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I built a new house, moved from Cherry and 14th to Walnut street.

Q And he painted in the house?

A He painted the inside room for me.

Q One room?

A Yes sir.

Q Just one room?

A One room.

Q Did he paint by the job or day?

A I think he took it by the job.

Q Was that while the house was new?

A No sir, there had been one coat of paint on I think.

Q It was before you moved in?

A No sir, after we moved in.

Q While you were living there?

A Yes sir.

Q Did he paint under your direction?

A Yes sir.

Q Your family there at the time?

A Yes sir.

Q How long was he there?

A I could not tell you how long he was there. I don't know that I was at home at the time. I know when he brought in the bill I paid him.

Q You paid him and he went away?

A Yes sir.

Q That ended the business relations you had with him?

A Yes sir.

Q Why do you say you know his reputation for truth and veracity and knew it when he lived there, if you never heard the question talked about at all?

A I never heard his reputation questioned.

Q I suppose you have talked with Mr. Grinnell:

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A No sir, I don't know the genteleman if I saw him.

Q Haven't you talked to anybody since you came to the city?

A I talked to the bailiff.

Q Which one?

A I think that is the gentleman there (Pointing to Mr. Furthman).

Q Mr. Furthman---that is not the bailiff?

A I have not been in the city I don't think more than two hours.

Q You say you never heard it called in question? --you talked to Mr. Furthman about it.

A (No responce).

Q How long ago was it you say you were with him on the police force?

A I think in 1876.

Q What other special police duty did you do aside from Centennial blow out?

A I think, if I am not mistaken about it---I will, not be positive in regard to this, but I think he was put on the special force there at the time of the presidential campaign, the election that fall.

Q To bulldoze Des Moines was it?

A I don't know what he done.

Q He performed duty at the time of the election?

A I won't be positive but that is my opinion that he was there.

Q He and you were together?

A No more than to say we went together while I was on my beat, on the patrol.

Q Do you think his reputation for truth and veracity was good because he was a member of the police force of DesMoines?

A I had no reasons to question it at all.

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Q Does that of itself establish a good reputation. that he was a member of the police force of Des Moines?

A No sir.

Q You would not think that that of itself would establish a good reputation, would you?

A No sir.

Q For the last ten years you have known nothing about him?

A No sir.

Q You don't know what he has done, or where he lives, nothing?

A No sir.

MR. FOSTER: That is all.

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