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Subject: Quelling the incipient Riot. 1877 article
Date: Wed, 16 Aug 2000 03:25:06 EDT
(From Monday's Daily.)
QUELLING THE INCIPIENT RIOT.
The San Francisco Authorities arrest Kearney, Day and others
The authorities of San Francisco have at last turned their attention to
the Communists who have been trying for some time to get up a riot in San
Francisco. Saturday night Dennis Kearney, the ring-leader, was arrested and
yesterday some more of them were gathered in. The following account of the
scenes of Saturday night and Sunday are gleaned from the San Francisco papers.
One account says the crowd in the street choked it up so that the police
had to labor to keep a path cleared for pedestrians.
At half-past 7, Dennis Kearney came upon the balcony in an excited manner
and said "I expect to be arrested before to-morrow morning. If I am, do
nothing rash, but bear me out and I'll stand trial and see whether these
blood-hounds can drag the workingmen down. My brother Daniel is now in
prison, having been arrested by mistake for me; if I am arrested, do nothing
outside of the law. If I am bailed out, put me at the head of 50,000 men,
and we'll astonish these aristocrats with our brilliant parade. I want to say
that the fire last night at the Central Pacific Railroad was set by sparks
from a locomotive, and not by our friends, as liars have said. There has not
been one fire started by any of us since this movement commenced. The
military are under arms, owing to this meeting. I am ready to lay down my
life for our friends. If I am arrested, do nothing but let the law take its
At this point five or six policeman went up the stairs and out upon the
balcony and arrested Kearney. One account says that the crowd did not offer
the slightest opposition to the officers, while another says:
" A cry went up among the crowd that Kearney was arrested, and by the time
he had reached the bottom of the stairs five hundred men were crowding up to
the door with determined faces and gleaming eyes. 'Drop him! drop him!'
yelled the angry crowd to the officers. But Kearney, raising his hands,
motioned the crowd off. 'Back, Back, boys!' he cried, trembling like a leaf
in his wild excitement; 'back, and keep cool! Let the law take its course.
Don't fear for me; I am all right. Back, back!' The crowd calmed. It was
astonishing to observe the extraordinary command Kearney had over his
Kearney was taken to the city prison and two complaints entered against
him, both for misdemeanor, in using incendiary language and advocating lynch
law. His bail was fixed at $6,000, which had not be obtained at last
The meeting continued, notwithstanding Kearney's arrest, and was addressed
by other speakers.
The following despatch briefly relates the events of Sunday:-
Owing to the rain the meetings advertised to-day to be held at the Lotta
fountain and the City Hall lot were adjourned to Horticultural Hall. Here
about 1,500 assembled in the forenoon. It was evident from the presence of a
large force of police that something was up, and in a few moments, John G.
Day was addressing the meeting, he was stopped in the midst of his harangue
and placed under arrest. A great tumult ensued, the crowd showing a decided
tendency to rescue the prisoner at all hazards, but the police stood firm,
and some of the leader of the workingmen addressed their followers,
entreating them in language more forcible than polite not to make "d--n fools
of themselves," as it was not yet time for such a movement. H. L. Knight was
also arrested while attempting to address the meeting; also James Willey, who
was making himself conspicuous in the body of the house.
Source: Napa Register Saturday, Nov 10, 1877 Front Page Column 5
Spelling as shown in article.