Primary tabs


The Communistic Conspiracy.

At the meeting of Communists Tuesday evening, called by their Executive Committee, addresses were made by Spies, Parsons, and Fielden of an incendiary character urging the crowd to arm themselves and resist the law. Prior to the meeting an article of an atrocious character had appeared in Spies' paper, the Arbeiter-Zeitung, and a circular, printed in his office, had been distributed, calling upon the Nihilists to arm themselves, kill the police and employers, and burn the latter's property. Fielden, a Communistic leader, was the last speakers, and we reprint the substantial part of his harangue, made just before his murderous confederates threw the bomb and opened fire with their revolvers. He said:

The law is only framed for those that are your enslavers. Workingmen in their blind rage attacked McCormick's factory, and were shot down in cold blood by the law [applause] of the City of Chicago in the protection of property. Those men were going to do some damage to a certain person's interests, who was a large property-owner. Therefore the law came to his defense. A million men own all the property in this country. The law is of no use to the other 54,000,000. You have nothing more to do with the law except to lay hands upon it and throttle it until it makes its last kick. [Applause.] It has turned your brethren out on the wayside and degraded them until they have lost the last vestige of humanity and become mere things and animals. Keep your eye upon it. Throttle the law. Kill it. Stop it. Do everything you can to wound it -- to impede its progress. If you don't, it is a life and death struggle between you and it, and it will kill you. Remember, if you ever do anything for yourselves prepare to do it for yourselves. Don't turn over your business to anybody else. No man deserves anything unless he is man enough to make an effort to lift himself from oppression. [At this point the bomb was thrown.]

It would be a waste of time to expose the infamous falsehoods contained in this screed. It is more to the present purpose that the speaker admitted that the object of Communism was to destroy property, overthrow the law, and inaugurate an era of destruction and anarchy, and that he urged his followers then and there to commence their work. The response came at once. A detachment of police appeared upon the scene. The speaker was ordered to stop his incendiary and treasonable language and the crowd was commanded to disperse by the authority of law. A dynamite bomb was thrown by some miscreant, apparently from a point not far from where Fielden was speaking. Its report had not died away before the mob commenced firing at the police, showing premeditated design in their hellish work. Forty or more policemen were killed and wounded, but at last the crowd was dispersed.

Such is the brief story of Tuesday night's murderous Communistic conspiracy. The responsibility clearly rests upon these leaders, and they must be made to answer for it. Meanwhile it suggests some grave questions to think about. There should be no blind, unreasoning revenge taken, strong as the provocation is; but the orderly and law-abiding people must seriously consider whether they can longer permit this Communistic organization the license it has hitherto enjoyed. These aliens, driven out of Germany and Bohemia for treasonable teachings by Bismark and the Emperor of Austria, have swarmed over into this country of extreme toleration and have most flagrantly abused its hospitality. After warming these frozen vipers on its breast and permitting them to become citizens, with the right to vote and hold office and take part in the government of city, country, State, and Nation, it has given them three or four times the wages they could possibly get in their own country, given them free schools, free care in case of destitution, and an opportunity to better their condition limited only by their own ability. The ungrateful hyenas have repaid this hospitality by organizing themselves into associations whose object is the destruction of the property, law, and government of the land that shelters and feeds them. They have held their Sunday meetings in our parks under police protection and march behind their red flags for this diabolical object. In their speeches, their newspapers, their pamphlets, their proclamations, and their handbills they have boldly and undisquisedly proclaimed their Nihilistic purposes; and for years the patriotic citizens of this community have not been permitted by the Mayor to interfere the jury, recommend that said unknown person who threw said bomb be apprehended and held to the grand jury without bail; and further recommend that the said August Spies, Samuel Fielden, Michael Schwab, and Chris Spies, as accessories before the fact, be held to await the further action of the grand jury without ball; and further, that the said A. R. Parsons and the aforementioned unknown persons be apprehended and committed as accessories without ball to the grand jury; and we, the jury, recommend that the constituted authorities in the future strictly enforce the statute prohibiting the holding of unlawful meetings."