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Letter from I. N. Watson to Jesse Barrett describing his attempts to counteract and prosecute voting fraud during the 1936 election in Kansas City.

Date: 
November 29th 1939

Memorandum and orders from District Judge Merrill E. Otis on pleas in abatement, demurrers and motions to quash, and motions to squash petit jury panel in Criminal Cases No. 13682 and 13684. The document states that the reasons for overruling similar pleas in other cases are laid out in Case No. 13646, and then addresses the motion to quash the petit grand jury panel, and in doing so describes the process wherein letters of recommendation for suitable jurors were sought from prominent members of the community, and then those individuals would be randomly selected.

Date: 
April 1st 1937

Court's ruling on motions for new trial, and sentences in Criminal Case No. 13682: United States vs. E. D. Shannabarger, Irene Brennan, Nancy Bodenhammer, Nancy Constable, Everett Pippin, Bessie D. Adams, Charles H. Kaiser, and James McNamara, defendants. Defendants appeared for sentencing beginning on April 16, 1937, and the court rejected Shannabarger's attorneys motion for a new trial.

Date: 
April 16th 1937

Memorandum from District Judge Merrill E. Otis ruling on affidavits of prejudice filed by defendants in Criminal Case No. 13646, and also addresses case numbers 13648, 13676, 13678, 13682, and 13684. Otis writes that he believes there is "no merit whatever in these affidavits" and rejects he has any prejudice in these cases.

Memorandum opinion and orders dealing with demurrers and motions to squash, pleas in abatement and motions to strike such pleas in abatement in Criminal Cases Nos. 13646, 13648, and 13650. Due to the similarities of the cases, only No. 13646 is addressed in detail. The demurrers and motions to squash argue about what and how voters' rights are violated when counts are switched from the intended candidate to another vs.

Date: 
February 10th 1937

Remarks of the court before imposing sentences in Criminal Case No. 13648: United States vs. Edson M. Walker, Loretta McEntee, Chloe G. Albright, Elijah Burke, Anna V. O'Laughlin, Tessie Mears, and John L. Drummond, defendants. District Judge Merrill Otis discusses the harm done by election fraud, and states that "there is no pretense that the defendants are not guilty of almost every conceivable ballot box crime." He hopes these convictions convince the public to not be discouraged from voting in the future.

Date: 
February 25th 1937

Issue of the anti-corruption, Kansas City-based newspaper, Future: The Newsweekly for Today. The front page includes an article, continued on page 8, about the effusive spending of city funds on the Kansas City Zoo, comparing the luxurious living conditions of a tiger there to many thousands of Kansas Citians with very poor housing and utilities, etc., including illustrative photos. Other featured articles include: “Arson Aylor” (p.

Date: 
June 14th 1935

Clipping entitled, "The Thirteen Jurors Who Will Hear the Vote Fraud Trial" from the Kansas City Times on February 16, 1937. The caption provides the name, profession, and hometown of each juror, all of whom live outside of Jackson County.

Date: 
February 16th 1937

Citizens' League Bulletin issue with the main article reporting on the 1936 Election Voter Fraud Trials and general corrpution in Kansas City. Other articles document the cost of crime, air transportation, tax dogers, economic plans, federal salaries, and Kansas City gambling.

Date: 
June 12th 1937

Clipping from Time (magazine) on February 22, 1937 detailing the election fraud that occured in Kansas City during the 1936 General Election. The article features extended quotes from Judge Albert L. Reeves concerning the election fraud, including the following: "We can't surrender the ballot boxes to thugs, gangsters and plug-uglies who patrol the streets with machine guns. We can't stand for that any longer." The article then provides a history of political corruption in Kansas City through 1936.

Date: 
February 22nd 1937
KANSAS CITY PUBLIC LIBRARY | DIGITAL HISTORY
Civil War on the Western Border: The Missouri-Kansas Conflict,1855-1865.
The Pendergast Years, Kansas City in the Jazz Age & Great Depression.
KC History, Missouri Valley Special Collections at the Kansas City Public Library.