Balladeer’s Blog continues its examination of the many facets of Fool Killer lore. FOR PART ONE, INCLUDING THE HISTORICAL CONTEXT, CLICK HERE
PART THIRTY-EIGHT – Some of the Fool Killer’s targets in the August of 1910 issue of James Larkin Pearson’s Fool-Killer:
*** The owners of mills and sweatshops in which children age 10 and under worked under grueling conditions. (Child labor was not yet against the law.) Regular readers of Balladeer’s Blog will recall that child labor was one of the MAJOR beefs of Klarenc Wade Mak’s 1917 depiction of the Fool Killer.
*** Lobbyist Jake L Hamon Sr, who was accused by Senator Thomas Gore (author Gore Vidal’s maternal grandfather) of offering him a $25,000.00 bribe. The alleged bribe was for Gore to vote in favor of a land purchase that attorney J.M. McMurray was trying to make from the Choctaw and Chickasaw tribes. Hamon allegedly stood to earn 10 percent of the Thirty Million Dollar deal.
*** Senator Gore himself, for muddying the waters of his own accusations by accusing Vice President James S Sherman of an illicit interest in the land deal. Gore wound up having to admit that his accusation was based on hearsay.
*** “Frenzied Financiers” – the name for shady Wall Street dealers who exploited loopholes to fleece their clients and endanger the economy. (See my review of the 1907 novel Friday the Thirteenth for more details on Frenzied Finance.)
*** President William Howard Taft, whom Pearson and his Fool Killer accurately predicted would NOT get reelected in 1912.
*** Members of juries which “convicted petty thieves while letting cold-blooded murderers walk free.”
*** The plutocrats who ran the nation by owning politicians.
*** High Society doctors whom he felt fabricated “new” ailments to charge their patients for treating.
*** An unnamed North Carolina preacher for bizarrely inserting praise of the dead Robert E Lee and Stonewall Jackson into his Sunday sermon.
*** Naive bachelors who were suckered in by Marriage Agencies.
As I always say, it’s fascinating to read this old publication and its odd mix of viewpoints – even the ones you disagree with.
I WILL EXAMINE MORE FOOL KILLER LORE SOON. KEEP CHECKING BACK FOR UPDATES.
FOR MY LOOK AT JOE MAGARAC, THE STEEL MILL VERSION OF JOHN HENRY AND PAUL BUNYAN, CLICK HERE
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