Artifact Corner: McKinley Assassination Article

Hi Everyone, and welcome back to another artifact corner. Today we will be looking at a newspaper article that either Fannie or Frank cut out and saved. The article talks about the assassination of President McKinley in 1901. Now, Frank and Fannie were not political people. They stayed clear of politics in their writings and their correspondences. But, the assassination of a president was a huge news story for our country. So, they probably like all other American’s, kept track of the story. So, let’s learn a bit more about this very important moment in US history.

President McKinley was first elected to office in 1896 as the 25th president of the United States. He was again elected in 1900 with an overwhelming majority. Following his inauguration in 1901, McKinley left Washington for a tour of the western states, to be concluded with a speech at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York. Cheering crowds throughout the journey attested to McKinley’s immense popularity. More than 50,000 admirers attended his exposition speech. The Pan American exposition was essentially a world’s fair showcasing all of the inventions at the turn of the century. McKinley’s attendance at the end of the Pan American Exposition was to be the capstone of the fair. On September 6th, while President McKinley was greeting members of the public, a man named Leon Czolgosz approached him with a handkerchief over his hand. When Leon finally reached McKinley, he dropped the handkerchief, and revealed that he was holding a gun. He proceeded to shoot McKinley in the chest and abdomen and promptly ran away. McKinley was rushed to a hospital in Buffalo for treatment, and Czolgosz was apprehended. Initially it was believed that McKinley would make a full recovery, so much so that his Vice President Teddy Roosevelt decided to go for a hike up Mount Marcy. Sadly, McKinley’s physicians were not correct, his gun shot wounds became infected, and William McKinley died on September 14, 1901.

The article the Frank and or Fannie cut out says the following about McKinley’s death: “From the height of joy caused by the news of the almost certain recovery of our beloved President, the nation, only a few hours later, was lamenting his death. Last week Thursday came the startling news that the President’s condition was rapidly growing worse. Friends and government officers. were again called to Buffalo, and on Friday night the family and close friends of the great President gathered around his bedside to bid him a last farewell. William McKinley, the third of our martyred Presidents, passed peacefully away at 2:15 o’clock on the morning of Saturday, Sept. 14th. The nation is expressing grief by every token of mourning. The body of the late President has laid in state and been viewed by thousands in Buffalo, Washington and Canton, Ohio, where he was finally laid to rest on Thursday afternoon, in the soil of his own home.”

William McKinley was the third president to be assassinated in US history, so it’s not a surprise that this news would be of great importance to even our non political family. It is a fascinating glimpse into US history, and we are so lucky to have it in our collection. Thanks so much for stopping by.

The following music was used for this media project:
Music: Sunny Morning by MusicLFiles
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