McKinley assassination timeline

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The Emma Goldman Papers
Last updated
Sept. 20, 2010, 8:40 a.m. (view history)

McKinley assassination timeline

May 5

EG: EG spent a few a  minutes talking to Cz in Cleveland.


July 12

EG: EG spends a half hour with Cz in Chicago.


September 6

EG: (In LML) Busing canvassing stores in St. Louis for Ed's firm when she finds out Mc has been shot.

Newspaper: Czolgosz alias Nieman shoots McKinley in Buffalo.  He is immediately arrested.  EG believed to be in St. Louis.

September 7

EG: (In 1906 Mother Earth, reprinted from 1901 Free Society)  Although most radicals, socialists, some anarchists condemn Cz's act as impractical, EG sees it as a sensitive man's natural reaction to injustice, says Mc betrayed the people.
(In 1911) Celebrates the spirit of Cz, condemns the injustice of his execution.

Newspaper: Reported that assasin "says he is an anarchist and follower of Emma Goldman" (NY Times). Other reports: Most, Justus Schwab and other anarchists claim not to know Cz; police about to unearth "nest of anarchists," Isaaks and other Free Society folk arrested. EG is busy lecturing out West or (according to later report) is leaving St. Louis for Chicago.

September 8


Newspaper: Cz's statement published: says he was a well-known socialist in Cleveland, moved to Chicago, then Newburg (outside Cleveland).  Had anarchist friends in various cities.  Along with fellow anarchists heard EG lecture in Chicago, which "started the craze to kill."  Calls himself "an anarchist...a disciple of Emma Goldman."  Denies that he had any accomplice.

September 10

EG: (In LML) Twelve men enter Norris' place looking for EG.  She dupes them initially, but finally gives herself up.  They say, "You're the shrewdest crook I ever met!" Upon her arrest she is threatened and (verbally) tortured by the police for hours.  Also tried to burn her eyes with a reflector. Threatened she will go the way of the Haymarket men.

Newspaper: EG is arrested in Chicago just before noon; held on warrant charging her with conspiracy to take out Mc.  She was staying with C.J. Norris, who was arrested later.  Police easily foil her disguise, capture her. EG denies guilt, says she "scarcely knew" Cz, had few words with him when leaving for Rochester via Buffalo.  Shows some symathy for Cz (and pronounces his name with ease!)

September 11


Newspaper: EG being held without bail, may be extradited.

September 12

EG: "Buffalo was pressing for my extradition, but Chicago asked for authentic data on the case." (LML 305)

Newspaper: No evidence found against EG, still looking...

September 18


Newspaper: EG's bail fixed at $20,000, hearing set for 20th.

September 24


Newspaper: Cz found guilty, EG set free after 2 weeks incarceration.

October 29

EG: (LML) The victim is murdered.

Newspaper: The murderer is executed in the electric chair at Auburn Prison.