Baltimore Evening Sun (27 January 1914): 6.



Welcome to the Skull and Crossbones! And not only upon every hip-flask of rye and every bottle of beer, but also upon every bag, pot and cup of coffee! And for every jug of squirrel whisky and near-beer on the “dry” Eastern Shore--two skulls and four crossbones.--Liquor Ring Adv.

From the estimable Sunpaper’s account of the efforts made to get Executive clemency for Capt. Harry A. Field, U. S. N., convicted by a court-martial of navigating the United States battleship Louisiana without a chart, and of running her aground in Vera Cruz harbor:

Captain Field is a native of Maryland and is a brother-in-law of Judge Alfred S. Niles, who went to Washington today and persauded Senator [John Walter] Smith to intercede in the officer’s behalf.

This Judge Niles is the same affecting reformer who, as Police Commissioner, lately refused. all clemency to one Charles L. Dietz, a naughty cop. Consider the disparity between the offenses of Dietz and Field. Dietz was accused of taking a smart swig of simulant while on duty–an act only remotely dangerous, even to himself. Field was accused of imperiling the safety of a battleship worth $15,000,000 and the lives of 1,000 men--and in the very harbor of a probable enemy. But Field, forsooth, had the good luck to be a brother-in-law of Judge Niles, and so that great apostle of the uplift saw no impropriety in trying to save him from the statutory consequences of his own offending or in summoning up all the political influence available to achieve that end!

This is not the first time, it may be added, that the metes and bounds of the Hon. Mr. Niles’ enthusiasm for the punishment of sinners have been humorously indicated. He is, if I do not mistake him cruelly, an almost perfect specimen of the new type of job-holding reformer–with one eye upon the City Clun, the Sunday-schools and the gullible old Sunpaper, and the other upon interests that are far more personal than public. What is an unforgivable crime in an ordinary offender is no more than a lamentable peccadillo in a relative, a friend, or a friend’s friend. If you do not believe this last, then have your solicitor examine the record in the case of James Homely, colored, who confessed to an unmentionable misdemeanor before Justice Supplee on June 24, 1913, and was fined $100 therefor--and who got out of jail on July 16 through the juridic science of the Hon. Mr. Niles. Are the city Senators familiar with this record? If not, then it will pay them to look into it.

And meanwhile it will pay the citizens of Baltimore in general to keep an alert eye upon the forward-lookers who keep the newspapers filled with their pious yammering on 29 days of the month--and then rush off, on the thirtieth, to pour sweet music into the old-fashionied ear of the Hon. John Walter Smith.

The Hon. Ed. Hirsch, as always, is ahead of the procession. More than a year ago he had 120 of his diamonds set in the form of a skull and crossbones, and he has been wearing the ornament with evening dress ever since.

The Hon. John E. Raine, editor of the Towsontown New Era, reports that he has been called a “------” by Constable John Leonard, of Hamilton and Lauraville, for questioning the constable’s morals. Let the Hon. Mr. Raine take heart: no editor ever amounts to a hoot until he has been called a “------.” The real proof of editorial virtue, indeed, is to be called something still worse, to wit, a “------ ------.” And there are editors of my acquaintance who have even been called a “------ ------ ------.” For example, the Hon. William H. Anderson, formerly editor of the American Issue. To record all the names that Anderson has been called would take the whole Morse alphabet. And yet he lives and has his being! And yet he can eat 40 shad roes in 40 days, and wash ’em down with Bulgarian bacilli!

Another great boon and usufruct of the Skull and Crossbones law will be this: that many of the more advanced bibuli will mistake bottles of prussic acid for bottles of Eastern Shore peppermint extract, and so the law of natural selection will get a boost.

Say what you will against him--and he has his faults, too!--Col. Jacobus Hook is certainly no ingrate. The moment he is elected Mayor of Baltimore he will offer the post of City Collector to the Hon. J. Harry Preston.--Political Adv.

The estimable Democratic Telegram, now under the able editorship of the Hon. S. M. Wood, LL. B., devoted darn near a page in its last issue to the doings of the City Club, that sanhedrin of forward-lookers appassionato. Without presuming to teach the Hon. Mr. Wood how to suck eggs, let me warn him, in all geniality, against dallying with such virtuosi. The Hon. J. Harry is a broad-minded and tolerant fellow, as his course in the matter of Sydenham Hospital amply proved, but there are limits to his endurance. There are gentlemen in the City Club whose characters he venerates as the Hon. Cole L. Blease venerates that of the late Frederic Douglas, LL. D., and if, by any chance, they are ever mentioned in the Telegram with anything even remotely approaching approbation, that moment, I venture to opine, something is going to bust.

Design for a city flag for Salisbury: A skull and crossbones rampant on a field of lily white. Quarterings: a demijohn and a red light. Motto: “Throw out the life-line!”

The Hon. Charles M. Levister, D. D., in the virtuous American Issue:

The ten commandments are full of Prohibitions. Who has the temerity to say that he doesn’t believe in the ten commandments?

But to believe in them is one thing; to enforce them is quite another thing. Does Col. Jerome H. Joyce enforce the third? Does the Rev. Dr. W. W. Davis enforce the fourth? Does the Hon. Ben B. Lindsey enforce the fifth? Do the vice crusaders enforce the seventh? Does the Hon. Mr. Levister himself care a hoot for the ninth? Incidentally, the hon. gent. capitalizes prohibition and puts the Ten Commandments in small letters, thus testifying eloquently to his reverence!

Yet again, it would be a good idea to compel the Maryland Suffrage News to print the skull and crossbones at the head of its editorial column. As for the American Issue, it clings to a female leg rampant. Of this, however, more anon.