LUELLA MONCRAVIE MURDER TRIAL AND AFTERMATH
Death of Henry Moncravie.
On the night of June 1, 1917, in the southwest corner of the parking of the United Presbyterian Church, just north of the Fifth Avenue sidewalk, at the B Street and East Fifth Avenue intersection, Arkansas City, Kansas, Henry E. Moncravie fell, after leaving the house of his estranged wife at 119 South C Street in that city.
That night the report from a gun was heard by several people near Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s residence. Al F. Good, at that time an express driver in Arkansas City, was walking by when Henry Moncravie approached him from the house, crying “Call a doctor, quick,” and then proceeded to the corner and turned west on Fifth Avenue. Mr. Good then heard a woman scream and a phone ring. He saw Mrs. Moncravie in front of the house, sobbing and talking to a neighbor lady, “I’ve shot him. I know I’ve killed him!” Good told Mrs. Moncravie that he had seen her husband depart and that he didn’t think Henry Moncravie had been shot.
Luella Moncravie did not respond to Good’s statement. She asked her neighbor to answer the phone for her, was refused, and promptly returned to her home. Startled by events, Mr. Good asked the neighbor what had happened and was told by her that Henry Moncravie had been shot. Mr. Good then saw Mrs. Moncravie leave the house, now wearing a coat, and quickly hurry away. Good followed.
Ralph M. Stillwell, an employee of the Hill-Howard Motor Co., driving home in an eastward direction from the Rex theatre, saw a man lying on his side, leaning upon his elbow, in the church parking. Stillwell rushed to his side. Henry Moncravie stated he was shot and asked Stillwell to take him to the Windsor Hotel across the street. Instead of carrying Mr. Moncravie to the Windsor Hotel, Stillwell rushed to the residence nearby of Ross Hayden and asked him to phone for a doctor. As he left Mr. Moncravie, Stillwell saw a woman approaching.
As Stillwell rushed off, Luella Moncravie located her husband. Mr. Good was right behind her and heard her say, “Henry, I wouldn’t have shot you for anything.” Henry Moncravie was groaning, and said nothing. Mrs. Moncravie told Good, “Get a doctor; get a move on you.” Mr. Good rushed to the nearby Windsor Hotel and phoned Dr. Hahn. He then notified Policeman Tom O’Connell and Night-watchman Allie Gilbert that someone had been injured and was at the intersection on B street and East Fifth Avenue.
Night-watchman Allie Gilbert and Policeman Tom O’Connell, summoned by Mr. Good, arrived next.
Mr. R. D. Howard, a member of the Arkansas City Daily Traveler staff, was driving north on B street and arrived at the scene about 9:30 p.m., when no one was present except the wounded man, Night-watchman Gilbert, Policeman O’Connell, and Mrs. Luella Moncravie. Recognizing Mr. Howard, Henry Moncravie asked him to get a doctor for him as he was suffering great pain. The wounded man lay on the ground, hatless and coatless, with his head resting in the lap of Night-watchman Allie Gilbert. Mr. Howard asked: “What happened?” Mrs. Luella Moncravie, who stood beside her husband, wringing her hands and weeping hysterically, sobbed: “I had to shoot him or he would have shot me.”
Stillwell returned, followed closely by Mr. Hayden, who had phoned Dr. Young for assistance.
In recounting events, Mr. Howard commented:
“Mrs. Moncravie soon walked to a small tree about 15 feet from where her wounded husband lay on the ground and putting her arms around it, leaned on it for support, then sank to the ground, where she lay with her head almost in the gutter for several minutes. No one went to her assistance and she finally got up and returned to the side of her husband.”
By this time a good-sized crowd had arrived, among them the only daughter of Henry Moncravie, Miss Eunice Moncravie. At the sight of her father, she broke down with emotion and her cries were most pitiful and heart rending.
Dr. Hahn was the first doctor to arrive; soon followed by Dr. Young. The injured man was placed in Dr. Young’s car and taken to the Arkansas City Hospital by the doctors, officers, and Mrs. Moncravie. Despite all efforts to save him, Henry Moncravie died at 11:30 o’clock. He passed away without making a statement even though fully conscious and rational until he was placed under anesthetic.
Harry Collinson took Miss Eunice Moncravie to the hospital, where she was calmed by nurses. A phone call was made to C. S. Beekman, a lawyer used frequently by Henry Moncravie. From the hospital, Mr. Beekman called Deputy Attorney Ed. J. Fleming, informing him of the situation. Miss Moncravie spent the night at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Beekman, and the next day was given in charge of her aunt, Mrs. Murphy of Lawrence, Kansas.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie, who did not enter the hospital, was escorted by Policeman Pauley to her home. Her daughter’s friend, Mr. C. C. Winters, was present when word reached them that Henry Moncravie was dead. Mrs. Moncravie, escorted by Pauley and Winters, went to Winfield and turned herself over to Cowley County Sheriff B. R. Day.
Deputy County Attorney Fleming, who resided in Arkansas City, went to Winfield the next afternoon to consult with other county officials and to accompany Sheriff Day and Mrs. Moncravie back to the city.
Dr. H. W. Marsh, county coroner, came to Arkansas City to investigate the case, having been called by Constable Gray. Upon his arrival he learned that Mr. Fleming had already issued a warrant charging Luella Moncravie with first degree murder; as a result, Dr. Marsh took no further action in the case, stating that had the woman not been under arrest, it would have been his duty to hold an inquest.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie was represented by her attorney, A. M. Jackson. County Attorney James McDermott came in from Winfield for the arraignment before Justice McIntire in the Arkansas City court. The attorneys agreed to set the case for preliminary hearing on Wednesday, June 20th, and Justice McIntire fixed the bond at $5,000. When the bond matter was handled by William Bunnell and F. J. Hess, Mrs. Moncravie was released from custody.
Deceased Leaves Relatives.
Henry E. Moncravie, an Osage Indian, was survived by his mother, Mrs. Elizabeth Baylis, of Grainola, Oklahoma, his daughter, Eunice Moncravie, three brothers, one sister, and one half-brother: John Moncravie, Denver, Colorado; Charles A. Moncravie, Arkansas City, Kansas; Fred E. Moncravie, Grainola, Oklahoma; Mrs. Frank Murphy, Lawrence, Kansas; and Harry Baylis, Grainola.
Henry Moncravie’s first wife, mother of Eunice, died seven years prior to the shooting. Funeral services for Henry Moncravie, conducted by Rev. Gardner, were held at 10:00 p.m., Sunday night, June 3rd, at the Oldroyd chapel, by relatives of the deceased only, after which the body was sent out on the late Santa Fe train. John Moncravie from Denver, Mrs. Elsie Bruce of Pawhuska, and Miss Eunice Moncravie went with the body to Sterling, Nebraska, where the deceased was interred beside his first wife. The haste and secrecy in carrying out the funeral service was brought on by word that Henry’s widow, Luella Moncravie, intended to have charge of the body, and their fear that she might file a suit and cause a delay in the funeral.
The preliminary hearing began at 9:30 a.m., Wednesday, June 20, 1917, in the large room in the basement of the Home National Bank building.
Judge G. H. McIntire was the presiding justice; and the stenographers were Miss Maurie Fleming and Miss Hattie Franey.
The array of attorneys in the case were as follows: for the state, attorneys James McDermott, Ed. J. Fleming, and C. S. Beekman; for the defense, attorneys A. M. Jackson, A. L. Noble, and W. L. Cunningham. Mrs. Moncravie’s daughter, Miss Hazel Clubb, and her sister, Mrs. Baker, of Omaha, Nebraska, were present and sat at the table with her attorneys.
James McDermott, county attorney of Cowley County, asked for a continuance at 3:30 p.m. as two witnesses for the state had not appeared in answer to the official subpoenaes served on them.
“A large crowd attended all day as there was a great deal of interest in the trial. Sheriff B. Roy Day admonished the crowd several times, calling for order, inasmuch as some spectators seemed to think the affair was very laughable. The sheriff advised them that the hearing was a very serious affair: a man was dead, while at present a woman’s life was at stake.” Winfield Free Press reporter.
Continuation of the preliminary hearing was resumed on Friday, June 22, 1917. There was sufficient evidence from the testimony of witnesses for the state to hold Mrs. Luella Moncravie for trial at the November term of district court in Winfield. Her bond was fixed at $7,000, and was soon furnished.
The defense presented no witnesses at the hearing.
Disposition of Henry Moncravie’s Trunks.
Judge O. P. Fuller, judge of the district court at Winfield, had given Sheriff Day an order to take charge of the three trunks kept by Henry Moncravie at the Windsor Hotel, where Mr. Moncravie resided at the time of his death. Sheriff Day stated that he had found the trunks in the possession of Charles Moncravie, a brother of the deceased.
Justice of the Peace McIntire, before whom the warrant was signed for Mrs. Luella Moncravie after the killing, ordered the sheriff to bring the trunks into his court for the preliminary hearing, where their disposition caused considerable argument by opposing attorneys. It was decided that the trunks should be kept under guard by Sheriff Day until the county attorney could secure the keys to them, at which time they would be opened in the presence of attorneys for both sides.
LUELLA “CORYELL” CLUBB MONCRAVIE.
On Thursday, June 21, 1917, the Arkansas City Daily Traveler printed an article from a Seymour, Missouri, newspaper, which concerned a former resident, Luella “Coryell,” who first married James Clubb, and then later Henry Moncravie.
The Coryell family consisted of J. B. Coryell, of English descent, born and raised in Ovid, New York, who married Mrs. Carrie Hall of Ohio, and their two daughters: Luella and Mabel. Mr. and Mrs. J. B. Coryell lived in Roxbury, Kansas, for several years immediately following their marriage. They then moved to McPherson, Kansas, and from there to Kansas City, Missouri, where Mr. Coryell was engaged as a contractor and builder.
In the early part of the summer of 1892, the Coryell family moved to a little farm three miles south of Seymour, Missouri. Not two weeks after their arrival, Mrs. Coryell sickened and died. Luella Coryell, then 15, came down with typhoid soon after this, but recovered. Then Mr. Coryell became seriously ill and lost his mind as a result of worry and the loss of a small fortune while in Kansas City. He remained in this condition for several months, then slowly recuperated, and was finally rational and able to manage his affairs. Their neighbors went to their rescue and aided the family. As the years went by, the girls easily took first rank in school and in social circles. In the summer of 1896 Miss Luella Coryell married James Clubb.
Recent Visit by Mrs. Moncravie To Seymour.
The Seymour, Missouri, newspaper gave information relative to a recent visit in that community by Mrs. Luella Moncravie.
“Mrs. Luella Moncravie came to Seymour on a visit about May 1, 1917. She arrived on the 9:21 a.m. train and went to the home of her stepmother, Mrs. Martha Coryell, and they spent the forenoon visiting friends in town, and in the afternoon they went to the Masonic cemetery to decorate the graves of Luella’s father and mother. That evening they took the 9:31 p.m. train to Willow Springs, where Mrs. Moncravie went to look after some real estate interests. They returned on the 7:03 p.m. train the following day and stayed overnight with friends in town.
“Mrs. Moncravie spent the following day visiting with friends and stayed that night at the Stone Hotel. The next morning she went to catch her train for home and found that it was six hours late. She then went to the Jennings Hotel, near the depot, to wait for the train. She was amazed to find her husband there sitting crouched in the hotel office. He had called her the day before from Springfield, Mo., and told her he was in Springfield and would wait for her there.
“It was learned that instead of remaining in Springfield, Mr. Henry Moncravie came to Seymour on a later train, bringing a detective with him in order to find out if any man had come with Mrs. Moncravie or if she was seeing a man in Seymour. Henry Moncravie employed a team and driver at the livery barn, it is alleged, and drove out past the country home of Floyd Smith, one-half mile north of Seymour, where Luella Moncravie’s step-mother was residing. Learning nothing from his drive, Henry Moncravie then returned to town and spent the remainder of the night at the Jennings Hotel. After Mr. Moncravie was discovered by his wife at the hotel, they went together to the home of Dr. Stewart, an old acquaintance of hers, and after visiting with him a short time, returned to Seymour, leaving on the noon train that day.”
THE LUELLA MONCRAVIE MURDER TRIAL.
The trial of Mrs. Luella Moncravie, on the charge of shooting and killing her husband, Henry Moncravie, the charge being murder in the first degree, was begun in the district court at Winfield at 9:00 a.m., Monday, November 19, 1917.
The State was represented by County Attorney James A. McDermott, of Winfield, assisted by Deputy Prosecutor Ed. J. Fleming, Arkansas City. The state’s attorneys were assisted by attorneys C. S. Beekman and Kirke Dale, Arkansas City. Charles Moncravie, a brother of the deceased, was present with the prosecution. Attorney C. T. Atkinson of Arkansas City was present also, representing the guardian of the minor daughter of Henry Moncravie; and in that capacity, assisted the prosecution.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie had on her side the attorneys who had appeared at the preliminary hearing: A. M. Jackson, A. L. Noble, and W. L. Cunningham.
The state attorneys made their position clear. Throughout the trial it was stressed that under the law, if Mrs. Luella Moncravie were to be convicted, she would be barred from inheriting any of her late husband’s estate. A Traveler reporter commented on this: “It is an ironical fact that W. L. Cunningham, one of Mrs. Moncravie’s counsel, was the author of this law.”
Securing a Jury for Moncravie Murder Trial.
The first task in connection with the trial was the securing of a jury, out of a panel of about 125. At 4:00 p.m., Monday, November 19, 1917, the defense had challenged six men and had six challenges remaining.
The Winfield Free Press reported that day:
“Mrs. Moncravie is charged with first degree murder for the shooting of Henry Moncravie at their home in Arkansas City last summer. The state has not yet stated its case, but it is apparent that the county attorney and his aides will try to show premeditation while the defense will strive to show that Mrs. Moncravie fired in self-defense.
“While it is not looked for, it is possible that another drawing of jurors may have to be made before the two sides agree on a jury to try the case.
“From examination of jurors the state fears that the fact that Mrs. Moncravie is a woman will have an influence on the verdict of the jury. In his first examination of the jurors County Attorney McDermott placed emphasis on his questioning as to just what this would have to do with the opinion of the individual jurymen.”
Questions Asked by McDermott of Prospective Jurors.
The Free Press said McDermott conducted the questioning of prospective jurors.
“‘Would the fact that this defendant is a woman have any effect on your verdict in this case?’ was a question which the county attorney put to each as he examined him. In practically every instance the man questioned declared that it would not.”
Questions Asked by Jackson of Prospective Jurors.
Area newspapers reported on questions asked every man in the course of this examination by Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s principal lawyer, Mr. Jackson. The questions asked were varied somewhat, but the sense was the same always.
Do you believe a husband has the right to whip and beat his wife?
Do you believe a wife has the right to resist sexual aggressions of a husband?
Do you believe in the law of self defense?
Do you believe that a man’s wife is not his slave, his chattel, his squaw, so to speak?
The Free Press described some of the opposing attorneys.
“Mr. Fleming, always a silent strategist, watched like a hawk for any ominous signs from the jury box. The county attorney was cautious in his questioning and was very thorough.
“The attorneys for the defense were equally wary. Mr. Jackson did the bulk of the work, but conferred frequently with his law partner, Mr. Noble, and Mr. Cunningham.
“The state objected to the use of the term ‘whelp’ by Jackson in referring to Moncravie. This objection was maintained by the court. Mr. Jackson then changed the term to ‘vicious man.’ In this discussion Jackson stated that he expected to prove that ‘Moncravie was a whelp.’”
Demeanor of Mrs. Moncravie During First Day.
The Free Press described Mrs. Moncravie as being the coolest figure in the courtroom during the jury examination.
“In the forenoon she sat close behind Mr. A. M. Jackson, her leading counsel. She was dressed in street attire and did not remove during the morning the long dark cloak which she wore to the building. She also wore her hat, a modest bit of millinery. It was a plain fur sailor with little trimming.”
As the day progressed, the following was noted.
“Mrs. Moncravie retained her self-control this afternoon. She threw off the long street cloak which almost hid her this morning, but wore her hat throughout.
“The courtroom, nearly empty this morning except for scattered jurors, was well filled this afternoon, but not crowded. The general public believed that the jury would not be secured today and remained away from the courtroom.
“Opinion among court followers today was divided. There was a strong opinion by some that the jury would disagree.
“Around the sheriff’s office confidence was expressed that the verdict would be guilty; but no guess was hazarded as to what the crime would be fixed at, manslaughter or murder.”
Defense counsel Jackson on the following day asked leave to further interrogate the jury and asked if any juror had read either of the Winfield papers. He asked the court to make an order keeping both papers from the jury. He claimed that the Free Press was unfair and that their account of the trial in last night’s paper was a contempt of court. District Court Judge O. P. Fuller stated that he thought the jury would be fair.
The jury was selected by 4:35 p.m., on Tuesday evening. November 20th. The following men from Cowley County formed the jury.
J. H. Finch, restaurant keeper, Winfield.
S. C. Wiles, farmer, Ninnescah Township.
G. W. Brown, farmer, Walnut Township.
Ernest W. Hamlin, farmer, Pleasant Valley Township.
George Carr, farmer, Udall.
J. W. Coate, retired, Winfield.
D. C. McKinley, farmer, Ninnescah Township.
T. H. Clover, farmer and stockman, Windsor Township.
H. M. Ditmer, farmer, Walnut Township.
George C. Garver, book store proprietor, Winfield.
R. A. Fraser, real estate, Winfield.
OPENING STATEMENT BY COUNTY ATTORNEY McDERMOTT.
County Attorney James McDermott’s opening statement was in substance that on the evening of the killing a shot was heard in the Moncravie home, and that a man fully dressed ran out and exclaimed, “I’m shot.” That the man proved to be Henry Moncravie. That soon after a woman, Luella Moncravie, came out and stated, “I shot him, and I guess I killed him.” That she followed Moncravie to where he fell and was stooping over him, when Moncravie said, “Don’t let her touch me.” McDermott then described the wound and the death.
McDermott’s statement was lengthy. He told the jury what the state expected to prove and proceeded to outline events leading up to the shooting of Henry Moncravie by the defendant, Luella Moncravie.
All of Mrs. Moncravie’s threats, according to McDermott, were qualified by defendant stating in substance, “if her husband abused her anymore, she would use her gun.”
WITNESSES FOR THE STATE.
Al F. Good.
The state called its first witness. Al F. Good was summoned from Wichita, where he was working as an inspector for the gas company. Mr. Good repeated his testimony as given at the preliminary, at which time he was an express driver in Arkansas City.
On cross-examination by Mr. Jackson, Good testified that when he heard the noise of the shot, he didn’t associate it with any trouble. That at first, hearing her scream, he thought Mrs. Moncravie had been shot. That he heard Mrs. Moncravie say, “I shot him. I know I’ve killed him!” That he told her he had seen Moncravie go away and didn’t think he was shot. That a neighbor lady first told him Henry Moncravie had been shot.
Mr. Stillwell again testified to his arrival at the church parking where Henry Moncravie had fallen, leaving to ask Mr. Hayden to summon Dr. Young, and returning to the scene. That he heard the defendant say, “Why didn’t someone tell me he was shot. They told me he wasn’t hurt. Henry, why didn’t you tell me you were shot?”
The next witness was Allie Gilbert, the merchants’ policeman. Mr. Gilbert testified that he ran to the scene and saw Luella Moncravie kneeling down at her husband’s side, and heard her ask, “What’s the matter, Henry?” That she then took hold of Henry Moncravie’s shoulder, and said, “Oh, Henry!” That Henry Moncravie turned to him and said, “Allie, don’t let her touch me; make her keep away.” That he heard Mr. Howard ask when he arrived, “What’s the matter?” That Luella Moncravie answered Mr. Howard with the statement, “I shot him.”
Gilbert testified that Dr. Young soon arrived and attempted to give Henry Moncravie a tablet, which the prone man could not swallow. That they got Henry Moncravie into Dr. Young’s car. That Luella Moncravie said, “Let me hold his head.” That Henry responded: “No. Allie, you hold my head.” On cross-examination by Jackson, Mr. Gilbert stated that Mrs. Luella Moncravie was crying, and asked him who he was. That he told her, and she replied, “You sure have been an angel to me tonight.”
Ross Hayden confirmed that Ralph Stillwell came to his house and asked him to phone for a doctor. He testified that he phoned Dr. Young and then joined the group around Henry Moncravie. That he heard Mrs. Moncravie say, “Henry, I didn’t mean to do it. Why don’t someone get a doctor?”
Dr. Milton Hahn.
Dr. Hahn, who assisted Dr. Young in caring for Henry Moncravie, described the gunshot wound in the abdomen and the treatment given to Mr. Moncravie. He said Henry Moncravie died on the operating table and that the bullet entered on the front side, passed downward, and came out the back. Dr. Hahn testified that he did not notice any powder burns. He testified that it was possible that Henry Moncravie was in a stooping position, such as would be taken by a person about to lunge at a possible adversary, when the shot was fired.
Dr. R. Claude Young was not called. He was by this time a physician with the army during World War I. His deposition was given later by the defense.
Ralph Oldroyd, undertaker, testified to taking charge of Moncravie’s body after the killing. On cross-examination by Attorney W. L. Cunningham, he testified that his examination was made the day following the killing. He saw powder burns on the inside of the right palm and on the front finger as well as on the wound. He testified to Moncravie’s stature: height, 5 feet 8 or 9 inches; weight, 210; very muscular; well built; not puny; erect carriage.
Testimony of Pansy Akin at Preliminary Hearing.
Officer Nunley testified to having served a subpoena on Miss Pansy Akin, the hospital nurse who assisted in surgery on Mr. Moncravie. That she told him she could not attend the trial as she had a case to nurse at Kaw City.
The state read her testimony taken at the preliminary hearing, after which McDermott exhibited the clothing worn by Moncravie for their examination.
“Miss Akin stated that she assisted the doctors in the operation on Henry Moncravie. She said she noticed the gunshot wound, and described the wound and told of the clothing. Assistant County Attorney Fleming here questioned the witness and she offered as an exhibit a union suit, a white shirt, trousers, and vest worn by Moncravie at the time of the shooting. Miss Akin said she tore the vest off, but did not tear the shirt, as she remembered.
“Miss Akin said she noticed the insides of both of his hands were powder burned. She testified that she gave the clothing to Oldroyd, the undertaker. She also testified that the night nurse took the personal effects and money from Moncravie’s pockets and gave them to Miss Eunice, Moncravie’s daughter.”
“About the time that the clothes worn by Henry Moncravie were displayed, Mrs. Luella Moncravie left her seat behind her chief counsel and left the courtroom. She appeared very weary, and laid down on a couch. The county attorney soon missed her, and she was asked to return. She did so, and remained sitting in her place until the court recessed for the night.” Winfield Free Press reporter.
Police Officer Ed Pauley.
The next witness called, police officer Ed Pauley, testified that he received a call the night of June 1st from Sheriff Day to go to the Moncravie home. That he was at the fire station on West Central avenue when the call came. That he went to the Moncravie residence, and entered the house through the front door. That no one was there. That the house was lighted and he smelled and saw smoke near the stairway, up near the ceiling. That he went into the kitchen and found a domino table and three chairs, and saw a man’s coat on one of the chairs. That he went through the house twice and searched the yard.
Pauley testified that he returned to the house later and saw Tom O’Connell, Cleo C. Winters, and Luella Moncravie in the house. That Mrs. Moncravie was lying on a couch at the time and asked him how Henry was. That she then asked witness if he wanted the gun. That he told her “Yes.” That he found it at her direction under the sofa. Pauley identified the Smith & Wesson, 44 calibre gun, which had one empty chamber and one empty shell.
“At this point in the trial Mrs. Baylis, mother of the deceased, cried out in distress and exclaimed, “Oh God, my poor boy!” Mrs. Baylis was described as a small woman with prominent Indian features. The defendant remained calm and unperturbed during this scene.” Winfield Free Press reporter.
Policeman Tom O’Connell was the next witness and testified to being with Allie Gilbert and accompanying him to where Henry Moncravie was lying. That no one but he and Gilbert and Luella Moncravie were present with Henry Moncravie at that time. That Mrs. Moncravie didn’t go into the hospital and that he went with her back to her home, where Luella Moncravie changed her clothes and lay down on a couch.
Charles Peek, chief of police, testified to the location of the Moncravie home and that he examined it on June 2nd, the day after the shooting. That he saw a bullet hole in the wall of the middle room, near the floor. That he found a bullet on the dresser and identified it. Peek testified that the bullet had struck the dresser and glanced off. He identified a piece of wood cut from the dresser, and described measurements of the bullet scar on the furniture.
Mrs. Harry Wilkinson.
Mrs. Harry Wilkinson, Arkansas City, testified that she and her husband operated the Windsor Hotel, formerly the Midland Hotel; and that Henry Moncravie boarded there at various times during the past year. She testified that just prior to their marriage, Mrs. Luella Moncravie, at that time Luella Clubb, called her and asked how Mrs. Wilkinson would feel if she married Henry. That she told defendant that it was none of her business. That defendant said Henry Moncravie had twisted her arms and mistreated her. That she asked Luella “why she would marry him after such treatment?” and that defendant answered, “there was such a thing as marrying a man to get rid of him.” Mrs. Wilkinson testified that Henry married Luella the following morning and that they soon moved to Grainola.
Mrs. Wilkinson testified that Mrs. Moncravie told her of attacking Henry Moncravie and getting the worst of it when she pulled his hair, and on another occasion running her husband out of the house with a “flashlight.” She testified that defendant assaulted Henry Moncravie in her presence, striking him in the stomach, and then derided him about his “big paunch.” That Mrs. Moncravie frequently called her husband on the phone after starting divorce proceedings.
Witness testified that Luella Moncravie asked her to induce Henry Moncravie to let defendant handle his financial affairs. That defendant asked witness how much Mrs. Baylis, the mother of Henry Moncravie, was worth. That defendant told Mrs. Wilkinson that her husband was like a “whipped puppy,” the meaner she was, the better he liked her. That once Henry Moncravie came to the Windsor Hotel in a “disheveled condition,” and stated the cause.
On cross-examination by Mr. Jackson, Mrs. Wilkinson testified that her hotel was frequented by the Moncravie family, and that Henry Moncravie boarded there after the separation. Mrs. Wilkinson admitted that she was a friend of Henry Moncravie and that she didn’t believe Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s statements about her husband. She showed extreme friendship to the family of Henry Moncravie. The witness was cool and frank. Attorney Jackson used a quiet sarcasm that tended to ridicule the witness. The court permitted great latitude, but finally sustained the state’s objection to Jackson’s method.
On redirect examination Mr. McDermott asked if witness knew what separated Moncravie and his second wife. Mrs. Wilkinson said, “Yes.” The court would not permit the witness to state anything further.
J. T. Rhodes.
J. T. Rhodes, the next witness, stated that he lived near Grainola and knew both the Moncravies when they lived there. Rhodes testified that one evening at a hotel in Grainola, Henry Moncravie was playing cards and Mrs. Moncravie came after him. That Luella Moncravie asked Henry Moncravie to come home and that defendant’s husband looked up and smiled. That defendant stated, “Smile, you damned Indian.” That Luella Moncravie then asked the witness to sit on a porch-swing with her as she wanted to “make that durned Indian jealous.” That he was on the school board, and thought at first that Luella Moncravie wanted to get her daughter, Hazel, employed as a teacher. That he declined the flirtation.
On cross-examination Rhodes was asked by Mr. Jackson about his relationship with his divorced wife. The witness testified that he was divorced on grounds of mutual disagreement and the defense then set forth that the divorce was for different reasons. The defense then asked that Rhodes be impeached and the court took the matter under advisement. On the next day Judge Fuller ruled that the testimony given by Rhodes should be admitted as evidence.
Rhodes was recalled for cross-examination by Mr. Jackson. He was asked if he hadn’t been divorced from his wife because of adultery. Rhodes denied any knowledge of it. Mr. Jackson then attempted to read into the record a certified copy of the divorce proceedings and the state objected. Before ruling on the objection, the court interrogated the witness as to the nature of his information concerning the divorce, and then sustained the objection. Mr. Rhodes denied that he had tried to force his attentions on Miss Hazel Clubb.
The next witness was Mrs. Faubion, operator of a hotel at Grainola, Oklahoma. Mrs. Faubion stated that she lived nearby at the time Mr. and Mrs. Henry Moncravie resided in Grainola. She testified that on one occasion defendant came to the hotel and asked her if Henry Moncravie was there. That witness said “No,” and that defendant called her a liar. That on investigation Henry Moncravie was there.
Mrs. Faubion testified that on another occasion, Mrs. Moncravie told the witness that she had driven Henry Moncravie away from home with a gun. That later Mrs. Moncravie told Mrs. Faubion that she intended to kill Henry Moncravie and plead self-defense. That defendant was angry with Moncravie because he would not take out his “Indian competency papers,” and that Luella Moncravie told witness she wanted to handle his money. That she had seen defendant kick Moncravie.
On cross-examination by Mr. Jackson, Mrs. Faubion admitted being divorced from her husband, and that she had talked about the case with the Moncravie family. She denied ever flirting with Henry Moncravie or being intimate with him. She admitted putting Henry Moncravie’s belongings out of the hotel. She testified that Moncravie gambled constantly. She admitted that defendant did her own washing and that she liked Henry Moncravie better than his wife.
On redirect examination by Mr. McDermott, Mrs. Faubion testified that Mrs. Luella Moncravie was always fighting with Henry Moncravie and talked about people.
On re-cross examination by Mr. Jackson, Mrs. Faubion could not remember that Mrs. Moncravie repeated gossip about the hotel. Witness testified that she had worked and nearly cleared a mortgage off her hotel property. Mrs. Faubion stated that she refused to move to Arkansas City to educate her children as she was afraid Mrs. Luella Moncravie would annoy her. That she was afraid of defendant.
Court adjourned at 5:20 p.m., Tuesday, the second day of the trial.
Lloyd Wilkers, Lyle Cozine, Jim Eash.
Testimony resumed on Wednesday morning. Lloyd Wilkers testified that he lived in Arkansas City and knew Henry Moncravie and his wife. That he called one morning to figure on some plastering work and that he saw Mrs. Moncravie follow her husband toward town and slap him several times. That he saw no provocation or resistance on the part of Henry Moncravie. That he was in the company of Lyle Cozine of Wichita and Jim Eash of Arkansas City at the time. The other two corroborated his story.
John Daniels, Police Judge.
John Daniels, police judge at Arkansas City, testified that on April 25, 1917, Mrs. Moncravie caused the arrest of her husband on a charge of assault and disturbing the peace. The witness said that from testimony before him, it seemed that she objected to Henry’s leaving the house and tried to stop him. When Henry objected and pushed her aside, she kicked him. That Mr. Jackson, now one of Mrs. Moncravie’s attorneys, appeared for Henry Moncravie, and L. C. Brown prosecuted. That on the evidence Daniels decided the matter in favor of Henry Moncravie and discharged him. That on this occasion Mrs. Luella Moncravie said to witness, “Don’t fine him very much, as we have just been to Kansas City and he showed me a good time.” That he urged Henry Moncravie to stay away from Luella Moncravie and that defendant said, “He can’t do it; he loves me too well.”
On cross-examination Mr. Jackson, known as “Judge Jackson” in Cowley County, demanded to know if the witness was not an enthusiast for the prosecution. This was denied. Jackson then asked Daniels if he had told all that was said. The witness replied, “Judge Jackson, do you say I lie?” Mr. Jackson replied, “Yes.”
Mrs. D. Monroe of Grainola.
Mrs. D. Monroe of Grainola testified that she went to the Moncravie home to deliver butter, which she sold, and was asked by Mrs. Luella Moncravie to stay for dinner. That Mrs. Moncravie asked her numerous questions regarding the Moncravie family, their wealth and chattels. Mrs. Monroe testified further that Mrs. Luella Moncravie told witness that defendant was the cause of the separation of Henry Moncravie and his former wife.
Cross-examination by Mr. Jackson soon excited the witness. Mrs. Monroe at first refused to answer, becoming angered at the word, “gossiper.” When advised to answer, witness made disconnected answers at first and suddenly had an attack of heart trouble. Mrs. Monroe took a “nitroglycerine tablet” for her heart; and the court and counsel waited for her to recover. In a few minutes, Mrs. Monroe was strong enough to proceed with her testimony and stuck to her story.
The Free Press reported: “After the testimony of Mrs. Monroe, court recessed for a few minutes. The jury stretched its several legs in the halls and offices of the court floor and talked war and dry weather, anything except the Moncravie affairs.
“The courtroom was crowded by a mass of humanity on this day. During the testimony of Mrs. Monroe, the court reprimanded the crowd for laughing. Every seat in the room was occupied and many stood around the walls of the room.
“Mrs. Luella Moncravie appeared cheerful on the third day of the trial, but did not seem to have the assurance of the first day. The hard grind was beginning to tell on her.”
Attorney Jackson Makes Complaint.
During the session with Mrs. Monroe, when the witness was afflicted with heart trouble, she had to be assisted from the witness stand. Charles Moncravie, the deceased victim’s brother—seated with the prosecuting attorneys—arose from his seat to assist Mrs. Monroe. As Charles Moncravie passed Mr. Jackson, seated at the defense counsel table, trouble occurred. Attorney Jackson interpreted Mr. Moncravie’s look as a “glare,” and asked, “What are you glaring at me for?” Charles Moncravie is reported to have replied, “I’ll get you later.” Defense attorney Jackson then complained to Judge Fuller.
“Charles Moncravie did not appear in the courtroom after dinner. W. L. Cunningham of counsel for the defense denied any knowledge of whether or not Moncravie had been removed from the courtroom.” Winfield Free Press.
Charles Moncravie Makes Statement to Reporter.
Mr. Charles Moncravie, when interviewed by a representative of the Traveler, stated that while assisting Mrs. Monroe, as he passed the counsel table, Mrs. Luella Moncravie, the defendant, looked up with a smile. That he returned the smile, and that Mr. Jackson, evidently thinking that the smile was intended for him, asked, “What are you smiling at me for, you damned Indian?” Moncravie said he replied, “I’ll let you know later.” Charles Moncravie told the newspaper reporter that he desired to be heard by the court on the matter, and would gladly state to the court the facts relating to the incident. He also stated that one of the state counsels, Mr. C. T. Atkinson, was a witness to this occurrence.
The Traveler reported:
“This matter has not been taken up in open court, nor has the jury heard it at all. Neither has the trial judge made any official order to the effect that Charles Moncravie must remain out of the courtroom. The court, however, did refuse to hear the attorneys for the state on this subject this morning.”
Testimony of Rose Fuller, of Cedarvale, as given at the preliminary hearing, was read.
“The witness said she met Mr. and Mrs. Henry Moncravie in front of the Windsor hotel, and Mrs. Moncravie asked her to get witness fees for her in a case at Pawhuska. They were at that time talking about a man who was visiting Dr. Young, and Mrs. Moncravie told Henry Moncravie she could have got that man if she had wanted to, instead of Henry. That Mr. Moncravie responded that she should have got him, or something like that, and then Mrs. Moncravie struck Henry and kicked and cursed him. This incident took place in front of the Windsor Hotel a year ago last May, according to the witness.
“On cross-examination by Cunningham, the witness said her husband was a cousin of Henry. The witness stated that Mrs. Moncravie was jealous of Henry and herself. Witness did not remember the name of the man who was with Dr. Young. The witness said that Mrs. Moncravie told her that Henry was crazy about her (meaning herself, Mrs. Fuller). After the quarrel that day Mrs. Moncravie and Henry went home and the witness went into the hotel. Mr. Jackson asked the witness a few questions regarding the man with Dr. Young.
“Mrs. Fuller said in answer to a question by McDermott that Cunningham had talked to her about being subpoenaed as a witness. Jackson asked her if she had ever been out riding with Henry, and she said she had on two different occasions.”
The Traveler commented on the absence of Mrs. Fuller.
“Mrs. Rose Fuller, who is the widow of a cousin of the late Henry Moncravie, and whose home is at Cedarvale, has not been subpoenaed, as she is said to be in Oklahoma. It is stated on good authority that Mrs. Fuller has been threatened by the defendant and that she fears for her life. Mrs. Fuller said that Mrs. Moncravie scrutinized her so thoroughly when she testified that she is now afraid of her.”
James Kyle of Grainola told of boarding Miss Hazel Clubb, Mrs. Moncravie’s daughter, when she was teaching at Grainola. Kyle testified that Mrs. Moncravie and her husband frequently visited Miss Clubb, and that on one occasion while playing cards, Luella Moncravie started a quarrel. That Miss Clubb remonstrated with her mother and told Mrs. Moncravie to quit fussing at Henry and that they would get along all right. That Hazel generally sided with her stepfather during the quarrels.
Chas. Patterson, of Arkansas City, testified that he saw Mrs. Luella Moncravie in company with her husband on May 17th of this year and again on May 28th while the divorce proceedings were pending. That they seemed pleasant and congenial at the time.
Mrs. Elsie Bruce.
Mrs. Elsie Bruce, of Pawhuska, testified that she had seen Luella Moncravie kick her husband while on the street and use profane language toward Henry Moncravie. That Mrs. Moncravie provoked their trouble.
On cross-examination witness testified that defendant had accused Mrs. Bruce of being too friendly with Henry Moncravie. Mrs. Bruce, a cousin of the deceased, admitted that she had been out riding with Henry Moncravie in his auto.
The Traveler and Courier reported on the appearance of Miss Eunice Moncravie during the proceedings that day.
“Miss Eunice Moncravie, daughter of Henry Moncravie, was present in court this morning. She is a quiet, beautiful girl of very ladylike appearance, and resembles her father very strongly. She sat with her grandmother, Mrs. Elizabeth Baylis. The young lady recently underwent a surgical operation for appendicitis.”
Roscoe Broft, of Arkansas City, testified that he knew both Henry Moncravie and his wife, Luella. That he noticed them together many times, particularly two or three weeks before the killing. That he saw Mrs. Luella Moncravie go up and down across from the Windsor Hotel on Fifth Avenue. That he saw her take Henry Moncravie from in front of the Monarch pool hall and start toward home with him. That later Broft saw Henry Moncravie come back up town.
Cross-examination failed to change his testimony.
Ed Rock testified to the same facts as the previous witness, Roscoe Broft. He fixed the time at 9:30 to 10 o’clock at night.
Restraining Order Read Into Record.
County Attorney McDermott then read into the record the restraining order Mrs. Luella Moncravie had secured, dated October 10, 1916, restraining her husband from coming on the premises or from annoying her. He also read Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s application for a citation for contempt for violation of this order, dated November 4, 1916, signed by C. A. Atkinson, an attorney for Mrs. Moncravie. The application for the citation was verified by Luella Moncravie. Defendant admitted that this restraining order had never been dissolved by the court.
Mrs. Wm. E. Keith.
Mrs. Wm. E. Keith of Wichita, a hair dresser and wife of Mr. Wm. E. Keith, of Keith and Wright, attorneys, testified that Mrs. Luella Moncravie and her husband were in her place of business in Wichita in May of 1917. She fixed the date by a check given her by Henry Moncravie at the time.
Mrs. Keith testified that while she was working on Mrs. Moncravie, they had the following conversation, in substance.
Mrs. K.: “You have a nice looking husband.”
Mrs. M.: “Yes, but he is an Indian. He is one of the best of men except when he’s mad. Some of these days, I will have to kill him.”
Mrs. K.: “I wouldn’t do that; I’d leave him.”
Mrs. M.: “That won’t do. I’ve tried it and he always gets detectives and locates me, right away.”
Mrs. Keith could not remember that Luella Moncravie showed any appreciation for her husband’s paying Mrs. Keith’s bill.
Cross-examination failed to change her story. Mr. Jackson tried to induce witness to say that Mrs. Luella Moncravie said, “Henry, this is nice of you, I didn’t expect it.” Mrs. Keith could not remember that this took place.
Mrs. Lizzie Bryant.
Mrs. Lizzie Bryant of Arkansas City testified that she met Mrs. Luella Moncravie on the street about ten days before the killing of Henry Moncravie took place, accompanied by her daughter, Hazel Clubb, and Mr. Cleo Winters. That Miss Clubb and Mr. Winters walked on; and that Luella Moncravie then said to witness that Henry Moncravie was following her and had abused her. Mrs. Bryant testified that Mrs. Moncravie said, “I’ve got me a gun and I’m going to fix him if he don’t quit following me, or bothering or abusing me.”
John Paris of Arkansas City, taxi driver, testified that on May 31st, the day before the killing, he took Mr. Henry Moncravie and Mrs. and Mrs. Sewell Beekman to Pawhuska in his car. That after they got there he saw Mrs. Luella Moncravie on the street, and had a conversation with her. That the defendant asked witness who he brought down. That he told her, and Mrs. Luella Moncravie asked where Henry Moncravie was, and what he was doing there. That she asked witness what they talked about on the way down. That Mrs. Moncravie said, “There goes Henry now,” and asked witness to take her in his car so she could follow him. That he did so. That Mrs. Moncravie got witness to drive her down to where Henry Moncravie had gone into a house. That she then told him to drive back uptown so that Henry Moncravie wouldn’t see her. That later he saw defendant again uptown and that she wanted to ride back to Arkansas City with them. That he dissuaded her. That Mrs. Luella Moncravie then asked witness if he had a gun or could get her one. That he told her “No.”
Mr. Paris testified that he saw Mrs. Luella Moncravie later at a hotel in Pawhuska. That defendant came up to the car, where he and Henry Moncravie were, and asked Mr. Moncravie, “What did you do? How much did she want?” That Henry Moncravie replied that he didn’t know as he hadn’t seen Beekman yet. That Mrs. Luella Moncravie replied, “You are a dirty liar.”
On cross-examination Mr. Paris told Mr. Jackson that they broke down on the way home about twelve miles out of Arkansas City, about 3:00 a.m. That Henry Moncravie phoned for a car and went on. That witness never got home till about 9:00 a.m.
Paris testified that he told Mrs. Luella Moncravie she had made a mistake when she left Jim Clubb. Witness admitted that he was a crap shooter.
The witness testified that he had told Sewell Beekman in Pawhuska all that had passed between witness and Mrs. Moncravie. That the day after the killing, Mr. Paris asked Attorney Beekman to keep it quiet, but Sewell Beekman told him that it was too late; that he had already told Mr. McDermott.
Mr. Jackson asked Mr. Paris if all the witness had stated wasn’t absolutely false. Paris replied, “Ask her, she’ll tell you,” referring to Mrs. Luella Moncravie. Witness denied that he told Mrs. Moncravie that Beekman was framing up on Henry and that if she would call him at the Puritan Pool Hall, he would tell her about it. Mr. Paris testified he told the defendant, Mrs. Luella Moncravie, that the Puritan was his “stand,” and she could call him there if she wanted him.
Defense counsel Jackson asked Paris if he hadn’t taken Henry Moncravie to Pawhuska to see Mrs. Baylis, Henry Moncravie’s mother, in order to get Mrs. Baylis to sign Mr. Moncravie’s note. Mr. Paris testified that he thought Henry Moncravie had; and that part, if not all of the money, was to be used in paying Mr. Jackson for defending the breach of promise suit. That it was the opinion of Beekman and Henry Moncravie that Jackson was a good lawyer and wouldn’t work until he was paid. Mr. Jackson replied, “That’s right.”
Mrs. Elsie Bruce Recalled.
Mrs. Elsie Bruce was recalled by the state and testified that Mr. Henry Moncravie went to her home in Pawhuska the day before the killing. That Mrs. Luella Moncravie followed her husband, Henry Moncravie, down to the house, reaching there just after he did. Mrs. Bruce testified that Mrs. Moncravie accused Henry Moncravie of trying to meet another woman there and that Mrs. Bruce made her apologies to her. That Mrs. Moncravie asked Henry Moncravie what he was going to do. That Luella Moncravie told Henry Moncravie: “You’ll come through with more than $1,200. I’ll see that you do.” Mrs. Bruce testified that she was a cousin of Henry Moncravie and had been twice divorced.
Roy McElhinney testified that he lived in Arkansas City and drove a livery car. Mr. McElhinney testified that he saw Mrs. Moncravie and her husband down at the Midland Valley depot in Arkansas City on the morning of June 1, 1917. That Henry Moncravie told his wife that he had come to meet her. That Luella Moncravie replied to her husband, “You are a liar, you didn’t come to meet me.” That the witness took Mr. and Mrs. Henry Moncravie to the Arkansas City hospital and later to the defendant’s home in his car.
Harry S. Collinson.
Harry S. Collinson, a hardware dealer in Arkansas City, testified that he sent a gun belonging to Mrs. Luella Moncravie into the factory for repairs several weeks before the killing. That a few days before the tragedy, Mrs. Moncravie called up and inquired about it. That he told the defendant the gun had not returned from the factory. That Mrs. Moncravie asked witness if he could lend her a gun as she had an automatic and didn’t know how to use it. That he told Mrs. Moncravie he had a “young German cannon” that she could use, and defendant told him that she would send Hazel and Mr. Winters after it. That Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s gun came back from the factory about three weeks after the killing. Mr. Collinson identified the gun as the one previously identified by Officer Pauley; it being the one used by the defendant, Mrs. Luella Moncravie.
H. J. Wilkinson.
H. J. Wilkinson, proprietor of the Windsor Hotel, Arkansas City, testified that Henry Moncravie roomed at his hotel while the divorce proceedings with defendant were pending. That Mrs. Luella Moncravie frequently called Henry Moncravie on the phone at the hotel.
Mrs. Edith Haney.
Mrs. Edith Haney was called, but did not respond. Testimony given by Mrs. Haney at the preliminary examination was read, over the objection of defense counsel, Mr. Jackson, who stated that since the preliminary trial, matters had been brought to his attention that he desired to cross-examine Mrs. Haney about. Mr. Jackson’s objection was overruled.
Testimony of Mrs. Edith Haney at Preliminary.
“Mrs. Edith Haney, formerly Mrs. Charles Fuller, of Grainola, Oklahoma, questioned by McDermott, testified that she saw Mrs. Luella Moncravie at Pawhuska, Oklahoma, at the Duncan Hotel on May 31, 1917. That Mrs. Haney, her baby, and Mrs. Moncravie occupied room 21 in the hotel at that time. That Mrs. Moncravie came in after dinner in the evening to visit her. This was about ten o’clock at night. That Mrs. Moncravie told Mrs. Haney about her family troubles. That Luella Moncravie told witness that she had told Henry Moncravie to stay away from defendant’s home; and that if he didn’t, ‘she would kill him and plead self-defense.’
“Mrs. Haney said Mrs. Moncravie told the witness that she had a 44 gun and the next time Henry and she had trouble, she intended using it on him. That Mrs. Haney advised against this, and Mrs. Moncravie then said she would rather be in prison than live with Moncravie and submit to his abuse. Witness testified that she had never seen Henry and Mrs. Moncravie in a quarrel.
“On cross-examination by Cunningham, Mrs. Haney testified that she was induced to come to Kansas and testify by Charles Moncravie under threat of requisition papers. That she never knew of any trouble between Moncravie and his wife prior to the day before the killing. Later she contradicted this in a way by stating that her husband never had objected to her talking with Henry Moncravie on account of jealousy; but because he didn’t want her mixed up in Henry’s trouble with his wife. Asked if her husband did not see her, Henry, and Jessie Rowell together, witness replied in the affirmative, but stated that they had no trouble over the affair. Witness said she was a cousin of the dead man by marriage. She was asked about Henry Moncravie and his relations with his former wives. Witness said she knew Henry and Mrs. Moncravie at Grainola when they were first married, and had never seen any trouble.”
Mrs. W. H. Hill.
The first witness on the fourth day of the Luella Moncravie trial, Thursday, November 22, 1917, was Mrs. Wm. H. Hill of Arkansas City, a neighbor to Mrs. Moncravie. She testified that about a month before the shooting of Henry Moncravie, defendant had borrowed a .25 automatic Colt gun from her to protect herself from burglars. That defendant returned the gun two days later. That Mrs. Luella Moncravie had never said anything about her own gun to witness. That she had known both parties several years.
Mrs. Z. M. O’Toole.
Mrs. Z. M. O’Toole testified to keeping the Walnut Rooms in Arkansas City, and that some weeks before the killing she saw Mrs. Luella Moncravie, Sylvia Johnson, Neal Pickett, and a detective there. That she learned from their conversation that their business pertained to Henry Moncravie. That Miss Johnson came out several times and phoned for Henry Moncravie, but apparently could not get him on the phone. That there was a partition between the two rooms used by Mrs. Moncravie, and that hanging over the partition was a picture. That after the parties had left, after dark, nothing had been disarranged.
Neal A. Pickett.
Neal A. Pickett, Arkansas City, testified to being called by a man named Fooy, to go to the Walnut Rooms with his typewriter, paper, and carbons, and acknowledge an affidavit to be used in a white slave prosecution. That this was in April of this year, and on the occasion testified to by Mrs. O’Toole. That he went to the room at 7:30 that evening and found Mrs. Moncravie, Miss Johnson, and two men there. That Miss Johnson was lying on the bed, and Mrs. Moncravie was sitting on the bed.
Pickett testified that Mrs. Moncravie dictated a statement, which Miss Johnson signed and acknowledged before witness. That occasionally Miss Johnson didn’t agree with Mrs. Moncravie, but Miss Johnson’s view prevailed. Witness stated that Miss Johnson and Mrs. Moncravie and the detective each kept a copy of the statement, which was written by Fooy on the machine. That on this occasion Mrs. Moncravie asked Fooy if the picture was fixed so that it could be seen through, and he stated that it was. That Miss Johnson was asked to call Henry Moncravie up to the rooms and get in a compromising position with him so that Pickett could witness it; and that Miss Johnson refused. Witness stated that he charged $1.00 for his notarial services, which was paid.
Pickett testified that after he left the room, he saw Mr. Moncravie on the street with two girls in a car. That he called Mrs. Luella Moncravie up and told her. That the next day Fooy came to Mr. Pickett’s office and called up Mrs. Moncravie and then went out, after asking Mrs. Moncravie if “the coast was clear.” That Fooy soon returned and presented a check for $20.00 payable to Pickett and signed by Luella Moncravie. That witness cashed this check and gave Fooy the money. Mr. Pickett testified that this was done to keep Fooy’s name out of it.
The cross-examination of Pickett was handled by defense counsel Jackson, who asked the witness, “Then you knew that they were hiring you to be a sneak?” Pickett answered, “Whatever you want to call it.”
The Free Press reported:
“Mr. Jackson was very sarcastic in his questions, but Mr. Pickett remained cheerful. Mr. Pickett sat twisted in the witness chair and idly swung a penknife, which he held in his hand. When Jackson referred to him as a ‘catchdog,’ he merely smiled.”
Cross-examination failed to change Mr. Pickett’s story.
Mr. Jackson asked, “Have you given your true name?”
The witness responded, “Sometimes they twist it into “Peal A. Nickett.”
The witness denied being known in Arkansas City as “Peekin Pickett.”
Jackson asked, “Are you in the habit of watching women undress through the windows?”
The witness denied that he was.
The state objected to this questioning and was overruled.
Mr. Jackson, the defense counsel, then asked Mr. Pickett if the husband of one woman did not give the witness a beating.
Mr. Pickett testified that on one occasion in Sumner County he passed a room in which a husband was undressing, and it irritated the man so that he rushed out and there was a fight.
Mr. Jackson asked, “He was mad because you saw him undress?”
Mr. Pickett responded, “Yes.”
Mr. Jackson then had Pickett identify the Johnson statement.
Sylvia Johnson - Her Testimony.
The next witness was called by the state.
Sylvia Johnson, formerly a telephone operator at Grainola, Oklahoma, testified that she was now living at Pawhuska and that she was born 19 years ago at Cedarvale, Kansas. Miss Johnson testified that her parents, now residing at Burden, Kansas, formerly maintained a residence at Grainola, Oklahoma. Miss Johnson testified that her first intimacy with Henry Moncravie took place in the telephone office at Grainola in 1915. That no date for their marriage was set; but that she believed Henry Moncravie would marry her. That Henry Moncravie did not tell her of his intentions to marry Mrs. Luella Clubb, and her surprise was great when she heard of their marriage. That she never was intimate with Henry Moncravie after he married the defendant.
Miss Johnson testified that she became sick and went to the Arkansas City hospital about three months before the killing. That Luella Moncravie called on her there and told Miss Johnson that Henry had confessed his relations to Sylvia, and that Mrs. Moncravie wanted witness to make a complete statement. Miss Johnson testified that defendant had told her, “she would be her friend, and be a mother to her, and fully protect her.”
Miss Johnson further testified that after the witness left the hospital, Luella Moncravie had Sylvia brought to her house, locked the door, and induced her to make a statement, under threats of exposure.
Sylvia Johnson testified that on another occasion, Mrs. Luella Moncravie induced the witness to Mrs. Moncravie’s home, and that attorney Ed Fleming was present when witness arrived. Miss Johnson testified that Mr. Fleming declined to have anything to do with the case.
Miss Johnson also testified on a later event when she went to the home of Mrs. Luella Moncravie, where Attorney L. C. Brown prepared a statement, which witness signed and acknowledged. That Mr. Brown tried to dissuade Mrs. Moncravie from insisting on the statement. Sylvia Johnson testified that the damage suit for breach of promise and white slave prosecutions were both discussed at this time. That Mrs. Luella Moncravie agreed to protect Miss Johnson during this meeting, and told witness that defendant and Miss Johnson would divide the proceeds of the suit.
Further, Miss Sylvia Johnson testified that the defendant, Mrs. Luella Moncravie, called Miss Johnson’s father and tried to tell him of the intimacy between Sylvia and Henry Moncravie. Witness testified that she protested and told Mrs. Moncravie her father would kill Henry Moncravie if he knew of the affair she had with Henry Moncravie. That defendant replied that Henry Moncravie ought to be killed. That defendant had urged the witness to kill Henry Moncravie, as Miss Johnson had a good cause for so doing, and that defendant, Mrs. Moncravie, had no cause. That if Miss Johnson killed Henry Moncravie, it would be no more than like killing a snake.
Miss Johnson testified that the scene in the Walnut Rooms, as given by Mr. Pickett, took place about two months before the killing, and took place when Sylvia Johnson came to Arkansas City for the purpose of instituting the breach of promise suit. That witness was soon after taken sick and had to postpone the suit for a month, and that Bird and Vaughn of Pawhuska were employed to bring it. Witness testified that on the evening she was at the Walnut Rooms with Mrs. Luella Moncravie, the defendant asked Miss Johnson to get Henry Moncravie up there and get in a compromising position with him. That she refused and defendant then asked her to get him up and talk it over with him while Pickett, the detective, and Luella Moncravie listened from the next room. That she tried to get Henry Moncravie on the phone but failed.
Witness testified that while at the Walnut Rooms, Mrs. Luella Moncravie told Miss Johnson that it would be nice to have $10,000 in the bank. That when Bird and Vaughn were employed to bring the suit, Miss Johnson gave her note to Fooy for $8.00. That this money, plus $7.00 Fooy was to put up, was to be used as a cost deposit. That Miss Johnson then gave Fooy her note for $50.00, to protect him if he should be prosecuted for blackmail. That no attempt was made afterwards to collect these notes.
Miss Sylvia Johnson testified that on the day before the killing, Henry Moncravie, through Sewell Beekman, tried to settle the case with her. That they offered her $500, and finally raised it to $2,500. That Beekman advised her to hold out and she would probably get what she demanded, $5,000. That she had seen defendant in Pawhuska several times after bringing the suit in May, 1917.
Miss Johnson testified that on the day before the killing, Luella Moncravie told witness she had called Henry Moncravie and told him he had better settle this case. That Luella Moncravie had accused Sewell Beekman of “double crossing them.” That defendant had asked Miss Johnson if she would protect her, if she needed protection. That after the killing Mrs. Moncravie talked with Sylvia Johnson at Pawhuska and urged Miss Johnson not to testify against defendant and send her to prison over a man like Henry Moncravie. That on the occasion of her first visit to the Moncravie house, the defendant showed her a gun and said she intended to use it on Henry Moncravie if he got so she couldn’t handle him.
Cross-Examination of Sylvia Johnson.
At 1:30 p.m., Thursday, November 22, 1917, the defense commenced cross-examination of Sylvia Johnson. Witness said she first knew Henry Moncravie at Grainola when she was 16 years of age. That seduction occurred in May, 1915.
Sylvia Johnson claimed that Henry Moncravie’s seduction of her was partly responsible for a long sick spell and a doctor bill of several hundred dollars.
Miss Johnson testified that Henry Moncravie told Sylvia he would get a divorce from Luella Moncravie and “marry the girl he had found in the central telephone office at Grainola.” Sylvia Johnson testified she never told Luella Moncravie that Henry Moncravie had promised to get a divorce and marry Miss Johnson.
The defense tried hard to break down Sylvia Johnson’s statement that she never had sexual relations with Henry Moncravie after he married the defendant. The witness faced the counsel squarely and again and again told the same story. Once, she testified, she went with Henry Moncravie to a house in Grainola and was only prevented by the arrival of officers. That she hid in the house until all had left.
Miss Johnson denied being coached as a witness. She also denied being a dope fiend or knowing that Henry Moncravie was. Witness did admit that she had used morphine tablets as a medicine. She testified that she went to Texas and remained several months partly from fear of Mrs. Moncravie.
It was evident that the defense regarded Miss Johnson as the state’s “pivotal witness” from Mr. Jackson’s grueling cross-examination. Sylvia Johnson was at all times cool and collected, and guarded her statements carefully. She admitted that she married a man while he was drunk, and that the marriage was annulled. She testified that Mrs. Moncravie had threatened her. She admitted unkind feelings toward defendant.
On redirect examination by Mr. McDermott, witness testified that Mrs. Luella Moncravie had caused her to be removed from the hospital to a rooming house and kept there three days to keep Henry Moncravie from finding her.
Her cross-examination was finished at 3:55 p.m.
The Winfield Daily Courier commented on Sylvia Johnson’s appearance when she appeared for the state as a witness.
“She made, on the whole, a good witness. She is of pleasing appearance and from the witness stand showed no signs of wantonness.”
LeRoy Kuhns of Arkansas City testified that he knew the defendant, Mrs. Luella Moncravie, and knew J. H. McElhinney. That he had seen them in his furniture store. That he didn’t know what they talked about.
J. H. McElhinney.
Mr. J. H. McElhinney testified that he lived in Arkansas City and knew the defendant. That he had conversations with her at different times. That she had called him at the Elks Club in Arkansas City and asked him if he and Henry Moncravie had been out with women. That Mrs. Luella Moncravie wanted to know if witness couldn’t go to Kansas City with Henry Moncravie and get Mr. Moncravie to drinking. That defendant wanted Mr. McElhinney to involve Henry Moncravie with women.
On cross-examination McElhinney admitted being a “boozer.” Witness testified that he had been convicted of driving an automobile while drunk. That he had plead guilty to having liquor on his person. That he expected to go to jail as soon as Moncravie trial was over for being guilty to violation of the “bone dry” law.
Rempson Conrad, a small boy about 10 years old, testified that he lived next door to Mrs. Moncravie and remembered running errands for her. That he remembered carrying a package for her. That defendant asked him to take it up to Beard’s. That it was a gun and the thing that holds the shells was gone. That Beard’s could not fix it. That Mrs. Moncravie had him take it next to Collinson’s.
Mrs. V. C. Jones.
Mrs. V. C. Jones of Arkansas City testified to the shooting. She stated that she lived next door to Mrs. Luella Moncravie. That she had heard no noise before the shot. That she heard the report of the shot. That her husband was present also. That witness went out on her porch and saw Henry Moncravie leave the Moncravie residence and walk toward Fifth Avenue. That Mrs. Moncravie came out. That defendant seemed to be crying or making some kind of noise. Mrs. Jones testified that she asked Luella Moncravie what the trouble was. That Mrs. Moncravie said, “I shot Henry. He was teasing me, and I told him I’d shoot him if he didn’t let me alone.” That the telephone rang and Mrs. Moncravie asked witness to answer it. That witness refused. That Mrs. Moncravie went in, got her coat, came out, and followed Henry Moncravie. Mrs. Jones testified that her house was six to eight feet away from that of Mrs. Luella Moncravie.
In redirect examination witness denied that she had ever seen Henry Moncravie sneaking around the premises of either place, but had seen him often.
Court adjourned at 5:10 p.m., Thursday, November 22, 1917.
A. H. Dohrer.
A. H. Dohrer, Arkansas City, testified on Friday morning, November 23rd, that he saw Mrs. Luella Moncravie in his store some weeks before the killing. That while she was there, Henry Moncravie came in and paid Mr. Dohrer for a pair of shoes which his daughter had purchased. That after Henry Moncravie left, Mrs. Moncravie remarked, “That d____d Indian is watching me.” That Luella Moncravie told witness that Henry Moncravie had been beating her and that she would kill him if he laid hands on her again. That later Charles Peek came in and inquired about some shoes. That after Mr. Peek departed, Mrs. Luella Moncravie made the following statement to Mr. Dohrer: “That d____d Indian has Charlie Peek following me.” That Mrs. Moncravie remained in the store a little while longer and then rode away in a car driven by John Moncravie, Jr., a nephew of Henry Moncravie.
May Martin, a waitress in the Saddle Rock Café, Arkansas City, denied that she had ever been the witness to any trouble in the restaurant between Mrs. Luella Moncravie and her husband. She effected a tart, crisp manner on the stand and denied every affirmative question Mr. McDermott asked her.
Mrs. Mary Morris.
Mrs. Mary Morris testified to hearing the defendant, Mrs. Luella Moncravie, say some time before her marriage to Henry Moncravie that she would either “break Henry or kill him.”
On cross-examination by defense counsel, Mrs. Morris denied that any injunction had ever been placed against her premises for maintaining a house of prostitution. The defense introduced the court records, and proved that there was one, which was declared a lien on her premises, and that she had paid the costs and attorney fees.
Mrs. Morris stated that W. L. Cunningham, Ed Fleming, and C. T. Atkinson had roomed at her house.
The state rested its case at 10:00 a.m., Friday, November 23, 1917.
On Saturday, November 24, 1917, a correction was printed in the papers concerning the report on Mrs. Morris’ testimony. The item read that Mrs. Morris stated that W. L. Cunningham, Ed Fleming, and C. T. Atkinson had “roomed” at her house. This was a mistake. All of the attorneys for the state and others who heard the testimony declare that Mrs. Morris said the following:
“W. L. Cunningham, Ed Fleming, and C. T. Atkinson had boarded at her house.”
OPENING STATEMENT BY DEFENSE ATTORNEY JACKSON.
At 1:30 p.m., Friday, November 23, 1917, opening statement was made by Judge A. M. Jackson, chief defense counsel for Mrs. Luella Moncravie. Mr. Jackson, his voice low and well modulated, stated that his client, Mrs. Luella Moncravie, insisted on justifying her cause. His preliminary remarks were most pathetic and the sympathy of the crowd was aroused as he sketched the life of Luella Moncravie, beginning at the time of her birth in a little dugout on a claim in McPherson County, Kansas. Mr. Jackson stated that the defendant was the daughter of a “civil war veteran.” That Luella Moncravie, then Luella Coryell, had raised her sister, Mabel, after the death of their mother.
Jackson then recited Luella Moncravie’s early life before her marriage.
The defense counsel stated that in the summer of 1896 Luella Coryell married her first husband, James Clubb, a man of little wealth, and that they moved to Oklahoma where their daughter, Hazel, was born in 1897 at the Clubb ranch in Oklahoma. Their life on the ranch was described: how the mother gave the best of her mind and heart to the caring for her daughter and making their quarters “homelike” for her husband, where life was rough with cowmen and ranchers the only visitors. A little money was accumulated; and then they moved to Newkirk, later going to Arkansas City, where the daughter could be educated. Then trouble arose between the wife and husband, and they settled their financial affairs and the wife was given the daughter and a part of their worldly goods.
Then across the path of the divorced woman came Henry Moncravie, an Osage Indian, smiling, handsome, an ardent wooer, but a degenerate and a pervert, “at whose death society was benefitted and hell rewarded.” In the end her pistol saved her in defense of this man. Mr. Jackson stated that the defense relied on would be self-defense.
Three things distinguished Henry Moncravie, according to the defense counsel:
First, the man was an inordinate sexual degenerate;
Second, the man was insanely jealous;
Third, when his evil passions were aroused, he would do any violence to anyone who stood in his way.
And the killing grew out of Luella Moncravie’s refusal to have sexual relations with Henry Moncravie at their home that night in June.
Mr. Jackson stated on that fatal night Henry Moncravie accused Luella Moncravie of having a lover. That he would turn her and Hazel out in the street as common prostitutes.
The defense counsel then read a letter alleged to have been written by Henry Moncravie to his first wife’s niece, a 16-year-old girl, on November 24, 1912, when Henry Moncravie was a married man. “Let the dead man speak for himself,” said the attorney. The letter was full of lewd and lascivious statements. Mr. Jackson commented, with respect to Henry Moncravie: “All through his life it has been woman, woman, woman.”
Continuing, the defense counsel stated that when Henry Moncravie was in school at Winfield he began his wanton behavior with women. Jackson then described all of Henry Moncravie’s misconduct up to his marriage.
Mr. Jackson stated that after Henry Moncravie had wooed and won Mrs. Clubb, she made one condition. Henry Moncravie must go to work. Luella Clubb told Henry Moncravie that he had a good education and that he must make a living. So Henry Moncravie went to Grainola, where a relative had a bank, and went to work in the bank. Six months later they were married and he took his bride, who was his third, to a shack in the little Oklahoma town. The roof leaked and the rain came down; and when carpenters were called, Henry Moncravie abused his wife when he found them there and his wife talking to them. He wanted to isolate his wife, saying she should not talk to the kind of people who lived there; that she should stay at home. “I’m no squaw,” she retorted and refused to be shut up in a house.
Then enters the eternal triangle again. One day when she went to look for Henry, she failed to find him at the bank and then saw him in the telephone office talking to Sylvia Johnson, the girl who was later to sue him for breach of promise. Trouble ensued at the little home and Henry struck his wife and knocked her down. The daughter, in the kitchen, heard the uproar and rushed in. Then Henry was seized with remorse and fell on his knees and cried, “My God, what have I done? Forgive me. I had a fit.” And Henry Moncravie had those fits, declared the counsel. He was a dangerous man. He was a dope fiend; his mind was a little impaired. From one episode to another the counsel went, painting as he went the character of the man whom the defendant killed that June night in their Arkansas City home.
Mr. Jackson stated that Henry went down to Oklahoma and started a divorce proceeding against the defendant, which she paid no attention to, and he abandoned it. That Henry Moncravie persisted in abusing his wife; and she finally instituted a suit for divorce, and later secured a restraining order. That defendant finally persuaded Moncravie to build a home, which he did. That soon after he assaulted her with a stool and struck her in the breast with it, causing a severe bruise, which she feared at the time would result in cancer.
The defense counsel stated that on May 13, 1917, defendant and Henry Moncravie drove to Caldwell; and on the way back they had a row because defendant would not agree to Henry Moncravie stopping the car at the side of the road and submitting to his embraces. That Henry Moncravie became enraged and exclaimed, “By _____, you will.” That he then beat her severely. That she ran and was taken home by two strangers in their automobile, Henry begging all the while that she go back with him. That it was after this incident that she borrowed the gun from Mrs. Hill.
Mr. Jackson stated that the defendant first learned of Sylvia Johnson’s intimacy with Henry Moncravie through a mysterious phone call. That she secured officers and followed them to Grainola. That on one occasion Sylvia phoned to her from the hospital in Arkansas City to come and see her. That defendant did not instigate the breach of promise suit, but that she had arranged the Walnut Rooms incident in order to see if Henry really was intimate with Miss Johnson. That Henry Moncravie’s protestations of love had so deceived her, that in spite of all information from other sources, defendant still cherished the hope that it might be but a delusion.
The defense attorney stated that on June 1, 1917, Henry Moncravie met Mrs. Luella Moncravie at the train on her return from Pawhuska, and on the way home accused her of intimacy with some person at the hospital. That when they reached home, her daughter, Hazel, and Mr. Cleo Winters were there, and Hazel was getting supper. That Henry started to talk with her there and accused Sewell Beekman of “double-crossing him.” That Henry asked her to go to Fox’s with him for supper, which she did. That on the way back to her home, a little girl, Ruby Conrad, met them and embraced Mrs. Moncravie around the limbs as she was too small to reach any higher. That Ruby went into the house with them, and Hazel and Mr. Winters started for the picture show.
That Mr. and Mrs. Moncravie sat down to a game of dominoes with Ruby Conrad, so the girl could be taught to count how the points in the game were scored. Then Henry got mad and left the house, the little girl following him out to the porch. That Henry Moncravie soon returned, pushed Ruby out of the way, went into the house and locked the door, the little girl watching them through the window.
That Henry Moncravie attacked Mrs. Moncravie, but she leaped back and cried, “No, you came here in my absence this afternoon and tried to embrace Hazel. No man can do that, and if you attempt it, I will kill you.”
That, angered at her refusal to bend to his will, Henry Moncravie seized a chair and struck at Luella Moncravie. That she evaded him and warned him back. That Henry kept on advancing and defendant ran into the next room and seized a revolver in her dresser drawer, and said, “Henry, stand back.” That he came on and seized the gun in his hands. That it was accidentally discharged, the shot taking effect as had been previously described. That during this final quarrel, Henry Moncravie stated that he had made his first wife submit at the point of a gun, and that, “By _____, I’ll make you do the same thing.”
Mr. Jackson’s opening statement began at 1:30 and finished at 3:10. The crowd, the largest of the week, was intensely silent as this opening statement was made. A pin could have been heard to drop as the defense counsel finished his recital and at the close a sort of sigh escaped the crowd.
Attorneys Vaughn and Bird.
The first witnesses called for the defense were Attorneys Vaughn and Bird, who represented Miss Sylvia Johnson in the breach of promise suit. Both testified that the breach of promise suit was planned by Miss Johnson, and that so far as they knew, Mrs. Moncravie had no hand in it. That Miss Johnson had told the defendant in their presence that she had been intimate with Moncravie many times after his marriage, and named the time and places.
While they were frank, they were very guarded in their statements, and required a ruling of the court as to their rights as attorneys for Miss Johnson, to refuse to testify. Judge Fuller required them to testify as under the Kansas statute, Miss Johnson having testified to the transaction, her communications to them were no longer privileged.
The state cross-examined both men sharply. The state has been trying to prove that Mrs. Luella Moncravie framed up this suit against Henry Moncravie and planned to get half the money derived from it.
After dismissal of the jury for the day, Attorney Bird was recalled by the state for further cross-examination. Mr. Bird denied ever hearing Miss Johnson phone Mrs. Luella Moncravie in the hospital. He stated that he testified that Miss Johnson quoted Henry Moncravie to Mrs. Luella Moncravie as saying that “if he couldn’t get rid of her any other way, he’d kill the d____d bitch.”
Testimony Resumes for Defense.
Court convened at 9:30 a.m., on the sixth day of the trial, Saturday, November 24, 1917. The defense counsel asked for an attachment in contempt for Mrs. Mamie Westerling, of this city, a former wife of Henry Moncravie. She is not at present in Winfield and her whereabouts are unknown to the sheriff, it was stated.
Deposition of Mrs. Pearl Ryker.
The first testimony introduced was portions of the deposition of Mrs. Pearl Ryker, a sister of Mr. Moncravie’s first wife, Lula Van Orsdale Moncravie. Mrs. Ryker stated that she lived in Nebraska at the time of the marriage of Henry and Lula Moncravie, but now lives in Yankton, South Dakota.
The Traveler reported:
“The details of her testimony were too revolting for the reading of even adults, and covered the proposal of Moncravie to her sister, and their entire married life. If her testimony be true, then the depravity of Henry Moncravie would beggar description. She speaks of long continued cruelty, and described incidents of perversion. Beyond the fact that she testified to frequent acts of brutality, gun play toward the woman, and assaults on herself, this paper will not print her testimony, as it was given.”
The Courier also refused to print details of Mrs. Ryker’s testimony. The reporter covering this trial commented about testimony given in her deposition. “It was too horrible to appear in print.”
The Free Press did print some of the testimony made by Mrs. Ryker in her deposition.
“Mrs. Pearl Ryker’s deposition stated that the deponent’s sister had been 17 years of age at the time of her marriage to Henry Moncravie and was in good health; but that when she returned after a period of married life, she was suffering from a loathsome disease, which Henry communicated to his wife, and that she had to remain constantly day and night on a specially constructed chair. That he was drunk when their first baby, Eunice, was born. That the next child was born dead. That twins were next born dead. That Henry Moncravie had frequently threatened his wife with a gun, and would come home drunk, and curse and beat her. That he was insanely jealous if his wife spoke to men hired about the farm; he accused her of flirting. That at one time he spoke in the presence of his wife of a trip to Omaha and of his relations there with a girl 15 years old.
“The deposition alleged that Henry attacked the deponent three times, once shaking her severely. On two occasions he came into her bed chamber at night, and once she struck him on the head with a shoe. That Henry Moncravie also had drunken tremors during which he would roll on the floor and ‘talk in Spanish, French, Indian, and cuss in American.’ That Henry Moncravie was lazy, wouldn’t work, and was known as an immoral card sharp, and liked to perform slight of hand tricks. That he also paid many visits to the wife of a druggist, a low character.”
The reading of the deposition was slow. Attorneys for the state objected to practically every question and answer. Finally the court took the deposition; and Judge Fuller announced that he would check it over and mark the parts that were immaterial.
The Free Press reporter commented:
“The smallest crowds of the week heard the trial this morning. An order, posted by Sheriff Day, forbid the attendance of children under 16 years of age, and seems to have much to do with this falling off in attendance.”
Art Paris, of Hutchinson, Kansas, was the next witness for the defense. Mr. Paris testified that he and his wife had roomed at the Moncravie house and had seen Henry there several times. That on two or three occasions they had heard quarreling below. That Mrs. Moncravie twice called his wife, once saying “Marie, he is hurting me.” Mr. Paris was not present on the night of the shooting. On cross-examination Mr. Paris denied that he had ever heard the defendant make any threats against her husband.
Florence Moncravie of Arkansas City, divorced wife of John Moncravie, a brother of Henry, testified to the birth of a child of Henry Moncravie and his first wife at her home. The details of this birth, while disgusting, reflected more discredit on her than on Henry Moncravie. Florence Moncravie testified that she had seen Henry Moncravie strike and kick his first wife often, and call her a vile name. That they often quarreled.
Elwin Hunt, city editor of the Eldorado Republican, son of C. N. Hunt of Arkansas City, told of seeing Henry Moncravie strike the defendant. That this took place in the spring of 1916. His description was graphic, humorous, and showed a most observing disposition. Hunt rapidly drew a map of the situation, describing it as he went, and even the spectators at a distance could get his idea. That on this occasion Mr. Henry Moncravie used a 3 foot 1 inch by 1 inch stick three feet long.
Elwin Hunt testified that while he was a guest at the house of Aunt Clara Farrar, he heard her exclaim loudly: “There is going to be a fight.” That he looked out the window and saw Henry Moncravie coming down a path towards Luella Moncravie at the rear of the Moncravie house. Being very deaf, Mr. Hunt testified that he could not hear what was said, but he observed that the Moncravies were talking to one another. That he then saw Henry Moncravie slap Luella Moncravie. That the defendant then struck back. That Mr. Moncravie dodged and she missed him. That Henry Moncravie then picked up the stick, previously described by Mr. Hunt, and struck at Luella Moncravie with it. That the defendant then fled from the scene into the house.
Depositions: Mrs. Amanda Van Orsdale & Lola Van Orsdale.
Anna Van Orsdale and Lola Van Orsdale, respectively, mother and sister-in-law of Henry Moncravie’s first wife, Lula Van Orsdale Moncravie, testified by deposition taken at Yankton, South Dakota. So far as their testimony was printable, it was to the effect that Henry was lazy, often drunk, and abusive toward his first wife. That Henry Moncravie was possessed of a “dual personality.” That on various occasions they saw Henry Moncravie prowling around the house with a gun; and that on one occasion they saw Mrs. Ryker, a sister of Mrs. Lula Moncravie, take a gun away from Henry Moncravie. That Henry frequently implored his wife, on his knees, to forgive him; and that she would soften up and take him back. That they saw letters written by Henry Moncravie to other women. Lola Van Orsdale described “sores and ulcers” that she had seen on Henry Moncravie.
Witnesses Testify To Henry Moncravie Having Disease.
Dick Coulson and W. L. Curtiss of Foraker, Oklahoma, testified to an incident tending to show that Henry Moncravie had a loathsome disease a few months before he married his wife, the defendant. Frank Rogers of Arkansas City was present on this occasion and testified to the same thing.
The two witnesses from Foraker, Oklahoma, were sarcastically cross-examined by County Attorney McDermott on account of their willingness to appear as witnesses when they could have refused to obey a subpoena, as they are non-residents of the state.
Ruby Conrad, a little eight-year old girl of Arkansas City, was the first witness called for the defense when court convened on the morning of Monday, November 26, 1917.
The Traveler reported:
“She was a beautiful little girl and as intelligent a child as ever appeared on the witness stand. Her story was told with childish simplicity.”
Ruby Conrad testified that on the evening of June 1st, she met Mr. and Mrs. Henry Moncravie as they were returning from supper at Fox’s. That she embraced Mrs. Moncravie, as she hadn’t seen her for several days. That she went into the house with them and found Hazel Clubb and Mr. Cecil Winters just starting for the picture show. That this was about 6:00 p.m. That Mrs. Moncravie wanted to go to the show, but Mr. Moncravie objected. They sat down to play dominoes. That she sat in Hazel’s “baby chair,” which was in the kitchen. That pretty soon the picture show was mentioned again, and Henry Moncravie said, “Well, d____, you go.” That Henry Moncravie got up and went out. That Ruby followed him out on the porch. That he soon returned, brushed her out of the way, and pushed Mrs. Moncravie back into the house and locked the door, putting the key into his pocket. That she then went home.
On cross-examination Ruby Conrad denied that she had a book with her story written down so that she could get her story pat. She also denied that Mr. Jackson told her what to say. About this time, she commenced to cry. She fought it bravely for a minute or two, and then had a perfectly natural childish cry.
Judge Fuller kindly reassured her, and she looked up with a smile and resumed her story.
Once Ruby became confused and testified that the incident took place in the daytime; otherwise, her story was the same.
Attorney L. C. Brown.
Attorney L. C. Brown, who prosecuted in the Arkansas City police court when Mrs. Luella Moncravie had her husband arrested, testified to incidents of that trial. His story was widely different from that told by Judge Daniels.
Mr. Brown also testified concerning the seduction affidavit. He testified that Luella Moncravie was not present in the room when the affidavit by Sylvia Johnson was made in Mrs. Moncravie’s home. That Miss Johnson insisted on making the affidavit, relating her relations with Henry Moncravie, against Mr. Brown’s advice.
Mr. Brown testified that he told Miss Johnson that she would have to fight Luella Moncravie as well as Henry Moncravie, but Miss Johnson insisted and the affidavit was made.
Ex-Sheriff John Skinner.
Ex-Sheriff John Skinner testified to the bad repute of Henry Moncravie while attending school in Winfield. He was sheriff at the time.
The state won a legal fight in a ruling on character testimony from George Nichols, Winfield night policeman. The court would not allow specific acts of Henry Moncravie, while he was in Winfield attending college in 1894 and 1895, to be introduced. Free Press.
Deposition of Mr. Rufus Carpenter.
The deposition of Mr. Rufus Carpenter, a tool dresser, of Carrolton, Oklahoma, was then read. He testified that he, in the company of his cousin, W. G. Carpenter, had seen trouble between the Moncravies on the road between Newkirk and Arkansas City a short time before the killing. The witness was not sure of the date or location, but said that he and his cousin had stopped for lunch when a large car passed them. That later they came upon Mrs. Moncravie, whose name at that time he did not know, and she asked them to take her to Arkansas City. That her face was bruised and bleeding and that her hair was disheveled. Rufus Carpenter testified that he rode on the tool rack and Mrs. Moncravie rode with his cousin. That they went a short distance and had to stop to fix their lights. That the man in the big car then drove up and asked the woman to ride with him, but she refused. That she went on to Arkansas City with them.
Testimony of W. G. Carpenter.
W. G. Carpenter, cousin of Rufus Carpenter, personally testified to the same facts, and identified a picture of Henry Moncravie. He testified that when he met Mrs. Moncravie in the road, she was crying, had no hat, and had a bruised place on her left check, and there was blood on her clothing.
Mr. Moncravie drove up behind them several times, and honked his horn, the witness testified. Then Moncravie urged her to get in with him. The witness testified that Mrs. Moncravie was crying and told Mr. Moncravie that she wouldn’t ride in a car with a man who had just beaten her.
Mr. Carpenter testified that he stopped his auto to fix the lights when it was almost dark. That Mr. Moncravie came up while he was working on the lights. That he borrowed a match and a pair of pliers from the Indian. That when he went to replace the pliers in Mr. Moncravie’s car, he saw Mrs. Moncravie’s hat in the front seat of the car and observed that it was badly smashed. The witness testified that he informed Mr. Moncravie that it would be better to let her alone until later.
The witness testified that Mrs. Moncravie gave her name when they reached Arkansas City, and asked Mr. Carpenter for his. That she told him the man was her husband and that they had trouble. That he had first seen the Moncravies on Sunday evening, May 13, 1917, about 6:30 p.m.
M. L. Williams.
M. L. Williams, a dry cleaner of Arkansas City, testified that he had cleaned Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s coat on May 14, 1917, and that he had cleaned it previously on May 8th. That the coat when received by him on May 14th was dirty and greasy, and had blood on it.
Mrs. Nellie Conrad.
Mrs. Nellie Conrad, mother of Ruby Conrad, denied that Ruby had a book with her story written down. She testified to seeing bruises on Luella Moncravie many times and to Henry’s ugly disposition. That she had often seen him slipping around the house after night. That Mrs. Moncravie was the taller of the two and also somewhat heavier.
Deposition of Dr. R. Claude Young.
Dr. R. Claude Young’s deposition stated that he was the family physician and treated Henry after the injury. He described it in detail. Dr. Young’s deposition stated that both hands of Henry Moncravie were powder burned, and there were powder burns on the vest.
In his deposition, Dr. Young told of treating all of Henry Moncravie’s wives, and of the death of his first wife from a “sloughing away of the abdomen.” That he had often treated the defendant for bruises on her throat, arms, and other portions of her body.
Officer Ed Pauley.
Officer Ed Pauley testified that Henry Moncravie asked him to watch his house. That Moncravie accused defendant of going to meet a man. That Pauley and Moncravie went together to the house and looked in, and saw two old people and Mrs. Moncravie. That Pauley continued to watch her and that he saw nothing wrong.
J. C. Myers.
J. C. Myers of Arkansas City stated that he knew both of the Moncravies. He remembered seeing them in an auto in July, 1916. Mr. Myers testified that he saw Henry Moncravie push his wife out of the auto. That he heard Luella Moncravie saying, “Henry, you hurt me.” That Mr. Moncravie retorted: “Yes, d__n you, and I’ll kill you if you fool with me.”
Mr. Myers also testified that he saw Henry Moncravie in a pool hall in Arkansas City on the day of the killing, June 1, 1917. That Henry Moncravie was nervous. That he saw a pistol butt protrude out of Mr. Moncravie’s pocket.
John Skinner Recalled.
At this point, John Skinner was recalled by the defense. Mr. Skinner testified that he knew Henry Moncravie carried a gun during the time when witness was Sheriff.
Rev. Frank Morris.
Rev. Frank Morris of Arkansas City testified that defendant, when she was “Mrs. Clubb,” had been his tenant. He knew the defendant well. Testified that he had seen bruises on her arm. On cross-examination witness stated that Henry Moncravie had boarded with defendant before her marriage to deceased.
Detective Fooy of Pawhuska testified that he was acquainted with Mrs. Luella Moncravie. That he met her in March, 1917, at Pawhuska. That he was introduced to her by the chief of police. That Mrs. Moncravie had hired him upon the recommendation of the Pawhuska chief of police to secure evidence connecting Henry Moncravie and Sylvia Johnson. That defendant employed witness to watch her husband and Sylvia Johnson. He stated that he had arranged the whole scene at the Walnut Rooms with a view of getting evidence for Mrs. Luella Moncravie in her divorce case.
Detective Fooy testified that the white slave idea was his own, as a conviction would secure a divorce on the ground of a “conviction of a felony,” and also discredit any defense to the breach of promise suit Henry Moncravie might make. That Mr. Moncravie had so beclouded the defendant’s reasoning powers that she felt she must “see it before she believed it.” That no compromising position was discussed at the Walnut Rooms. That Fooy wanted to see if he couldn’t trap Henry Moncravie into a discussion and admission before witnesses such as Mrs. Moncravie, Neal Pickett, and himself. That it was with some difficulty that he persuaded Miss Johnson to make the affidavit.
Detective Fooy stated that he appealed to Sylvia Johnson’s better nature, and “she finally consented to make the affidavit to Fooy in Mrs. Moncravie’s divorce case.”
That Mrs. Moncravie strenuously objected to any criminal prosecution of Henry Moncravie as all she desired was a divorce. Detective Fooy identified the Johnson affidavit and also his contract with defendant. By this contract Fooy was to receive $100 compensation, $25 cash, and the rest contingent.
Mr. Fooy testified that Miss Johnson tried to get Henry Moncravie by phone. That breach of promise suit was not discussed. That afterward Sylvia Johnson came to Pawhuska to discuss a damage suit. That he saw Mrs. Moncravie in Pawhuska the day before the killing. That he had heard Miss Johnson confess to defendant in Pawhuska that Sylvia was still intimate with Henry Moncravie and had named times and places. That he never talked with Mrs. Moncravie about “breach of promise suit.” That he did not furnish money for the cost deposit in the breach of promise suit, and that Mrs. Moncravie had not done so. That Jack Claypool did furnish the money and took Miss Johnson’s note for the amount. Fooy denied taking Miss Johnson’s note for $50.00 to keep him clear of blackmail.
On cross-examination Detective Fooy admitted that he had killed two men, and had many times been arrested for minor offenses, but had never been convicted of anything.
Mr. B. W. Boardman.
Mr. B. W. Boardman of Arkansas City, a lumber man, told of a real estate transaction the defendant successfully handled for him that took her to Missouri and several times to Pawhuska.
Mrs. Marie Paris.
Mrs. Marie Paris, wife of Art Paris, testified to seeing Henry Moncravie beat his wife most shamefully while she and her husband occupied rooms in the Moncravie Flats. That she had seen bruises on the defendant, and had been appealed to by her for protection. That some of Henry Moncravie’s acts were positively cruel and inhuman. That on one occasion when the defendant called on the witness for her help, Mr. Moncravie tried to expose defendant’s person in such a manner that Mrs. Moncravie would be afraid to allow help to enter the room. That Mrs. Moncravie had refused to talk with Henry Moncravie over the phone. That the deceased would often accuse Mrs. Paris and her husband of being given free rent in order to act as blinds for Mrs. Moncravie in her alleged immoral intrigues. That this continuous bad treatment made the defendant a nervous wreck. That it was her opinion that Mrs. Moncravie really loved her husband.
Mrs. Paris testified that on one occasion, which was the last time she ever saw Henry Moncravie, she put on a coat and hat and stepped out in the shadows on the porch in order to have fun with Mr. Moncravie. Mrs. Paris spoke of this as a joke, and said she wouldn’t hesitate to play it on her husband if his conduct ever warranted it.
EIGHTH DAY OF TRIAL.
The Evening Press reported that nearly 100 witnesses had been examined prior to the eighth day of the trial.
“The courtroom was crowded on this day. Even with children barred, many persons were unable to even glimpse the interior of the court.
“One fact is apparent to all: the Moncravie family are prosecuting vehemently in order to save all of the property of the deceased for his daughter, Eunice, now 13 years old. Under the Kansas law a conviction would bar Mrs. Moncravie from inheriting any of this property. As the greater part of it is in Oklahoma, the law of that state would govern; and if their statute is similar to that of Kansas, the result would be the same. Thus it is apparent the defense has a double incentive; that of preserving her liberty and good name, and of protecting her rights as the surviving widow of Henry Moncravie.”
Sheriff Day Testifies to Contents of Trunks.
Sheriff Day testified to the contents of the Henry Moncravie trunks and they were exhibited to the jury. They contained immoral pictures, women’s forms, etc., and several pamphlets.
The county attorney made violent objections, but was overruled. A book entitled “How to Play Poker,” was in the list.
On cross-examination, Sheriff Day testified that the defendant was present when these things were taken from the deceased’s trunk and joked about it.
Jerome Wilson, Cedarvale banker, testified to leasing the Moncravie land from Henry Moncravie. That Mrs. Luella Moncravie did the “dickering.” Mr. Wilson identified the lease.
Mrs. Clarence Mogle.
Mrs. Clarence Mogle, of Arkansas City, testified that Mr. and Mrs. Henry Moncravie looked at Mrs. Mogle’s property with the intention of buying it in December, 1916. That she heard Mrs. Luella Moncravie tell Henry Moncravie that she would agree to go back to Henry if he would do the right thing and make a home. That Henry Moncravie said as soon as he settled with Jerome Wilson, he would take the home. That he showed his ability with card tricks.
Other Witnesses Testify for Defense.
Many other witnesses were called by the defense (before and during testimony given by the defendant) for the purpose of testifying they had observed bruises on Mrs. Luella Moncravie.
Oath Administered to Mrs. Moncravie.
At 9:45 a.m., November 27, 1917, Mrs. Tonkinson administered the oath to Mrs. Luella Moncravie. The defendant had not been sworn when the defense witnesses took their oaths. This had caused much speculation as to whether or not the defense would put the defendant on the stand.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie, born 40 years ago in a sod house in McPherson County, Kansas, gave a brief account of caring for her only sister, Mabel, three years younger, when their mother died.
Mrs. Moncravie stated that her first husband was Jim Clubb. That she and Jim Clubb took up a claim near Blackwell, Oklahoma, and lived there a year after their marriage. That Clubb then leased Indian land in the Kaw country and took his wife and child there, Miss Hazel having been born while they lived on the first claim near Blackwell.
The defendant testified that the Kaw country at that time was a wild country and cow-boys and Indians were the rule. She told of boarding as many as six men at a time, keeping the school teacher during school months and any who might want board. That Mr. Clubb was away from home much of the time; as a result, she did all the work and had her hands full with her tasks. That the Midland Valley Railroad came through; as a result, she had more men to board. That Jim Clubb then moved out of the back range country and took his family to Newkirk. That they lived there two years, coming then to Arkansas City. That Mr. Clubb bought a home and settled his family in it so that the daughter might go to school. That while the Clubbs were living in their Arkansas City home, they rented out rooms. That Henry Moncravie came there one day to rent a room. That they had none to rent at that time. That Mr. Clubb did the talking. That this was the first time Luella Moncravie, then Mrs. Jim Clubb, saw Henry Moncravie.
The defendant testified that some time after she first met Henry Moncravie, she and Jim Clubb separated, and divided their worldly goods. She got the home and custody of their daughter. That after she and her daughter moved to the new house built by Rev. Mr. Morris, Henry Moncravie came again and engaged a room in the winter of 1913, fifteen months before their marriage. That he roomed there four weeks. The defendant testified that about that time she suffered an attack of rheumatism and later pleurisy, making two stays at a hospital.
Henry Moncravie, the defendant testified, proposed in the late summer of 1914 and she made one stipulation: Henry should go to work. The defendant said that she had been used to work and believed that everyone should be busy. That Henry Moncravie suggested going to work at Grainola as a bookkeeper in the bank belonging to his brother, and that this was done.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie testified that she and Henry Moncravie were married on June 13, 1915. That she then sold her house in Arkansas City, and prepared to move to Grainola. That the negroes who came to pack up her household goods caused Henry Moncravie to become jealous and he “jerked her about.”
After they had moved to Grainola, the defendant testified, Henry Moncravie became jealous when carpenters came to fix the roof, which was leaking, in the small house. That he refused to allow her to talk with the carpenters and accused her of making dates. That all the furniture Henry Moncravie furnished was a rug, bed, dresser, and poker table, which they used as a dining table. That he also did not want Hazel to have company, saying that the people were not fit for her to associate with.
One evening after banking hours, the defendant testified, she went to the bank to walk home with Henry Moncravie, but he was not there. That she found him talking in the telephone office with Sylvia Johnson. That when Henry Moncravie saw the defendant, he flew into a rage, saying she came to see some man. That they went home together and he ordered her to stay at home; she refused, and told him she wouldn’t be his “squaw.” That he struck her, knocking her over on the bed. That she arose, and he knocked her down again. That Hazel ran in and he stopped. That Henry Moncravie then repented and said, “Oh, my God Lue, what have I done? Why did I do it?”
Mrs. Moncravie testified that she and Henry Moncravie next made a trip to Cedar Vale, Kansas, and sold some furniture which Henry had when he lived there with his first wife. Debts took all the money.
When they lived in Grainola, Luella Moncravie testified, Henry Moncravie went repeatedly to the hotel for water, their cistern being foul. There he would talk to Mrs. Faubion, although he would not let his wife talk to her. That on one occasion Henry Moncravie refused to go after water; and that when the defendant started to do so, he hit her in the face. “Then, to be honest about it, I pulled his hair,” Mrs. Moncravie said. That on this occasion Henry Moncravie knocked her unconscious and left, but later came back and told her he was sorry.
The defendant testified that as a result of this and kindred abuses, she had to go to the hospital at Arkansas City, where she was treated for her ailments. That Moncravie justified his treatment of her by saying that his previous wives had been untrue to him and made him jealous.
Mrs. Moncravie testified that Henry Moncravie admitted to her he was gambling. That he once told her she couldn’t go to Arkansas City with him as his daughter, Eunice, had refused to ride with her; angered by this statement, the defendant got mad and kicked Henry Moncravie on his ankle.
After much abuse from Henry Moncravie at Grainola, the defendant testified, she made the decision to separate from her husband and move back to Arkansas City. That she crated up her furniture, but failed for some time to get a man to haul it to the depot for her. That Henry Moncravie tried to prevent her from getting her goods shipped. That Henry Moncravie’s step-brother, Harry Baylis, advised Mr. Moncravie that he must release the goods after Mr. Baylis had a phone conversation with Luella Moncravie’s attorney, who at that time was Sewell Beekman. The defendant testified that she left a bedroom fully furnished for Henry Moncravie’s use when she left their home in Grainola.
On her return to Arkansas City, Mrs. Moncravie testified that she rented a house. That she rented the upstairs to the Paris couple and set up housekeeping. That a little later Henry Moncravie came to see her and told her how sorry he was, and they reconciled.
The defendant told of taking a trip to Kansas City with Henry Moncravie to look up styles of architecture as they were building the Moncravie flats at the time. That Henry Moncravie followed her constantly. Luella Moncravie testified that Henry Moncravie was insanely jealous, and would curse and strike her when it was necessary for her to talk to the carpenters. She testified to many horrible and revolting acts.
Luella Moncravie testified that after she and Henry Moncravie returned from Kansas City, Sylvia Johnson called at their home on the pretext of having relatives on that street. That a few days later, she received a mysterious phone call that Henry Moncravie and the Johnson girl were intimate and that they were taking the train from Arkansas City and would spend the night at the house in Grainola. That defendant did not believe this story, but determined to inquire into it. That she went to see Attorney Beekman. That Mr. Beekman got a driver and John Morhain to go with her to investigate. That when they reached the house about ten o’clock that night, Morhain looked through the house, and told her that he did not find anyone there.
According to the defendant, when Sylvia Johnson was hurt and came to the hospital at Arkansas City, she asked Luella Moncravie to come and see her. The defendant testified that Sylvia Johnson called again, and Henry answered the phone. That there was some difficulty at that time between defendant and Henry Moncravie, but Henry smoothed it over. That Mrs. Moncravie visited the young girl at the hospital that night, as she wanted to see what Sylvia had to tell her; and that after she got there, Henry Moncravie came in, making it impossible for the defendant to have a confidential talk with the girl. That she later communicated with the girl, who was staying at the Joe Cooper residence.
Sylvia Johnson, Mrs. Luella Moncravie testified, then came to the defendant’s home and told her about her intimacies with Henry Moncravie, saying that she wanted Henry Moncravie arrested. That she told Sylvia Johnson this would not benefit her; telling Miss Johnson it would ruin Sylvia’s life to have this told. The defendant stated that she then sought Attorney Beekman to get the girl’s affidavit; that Beekman was busy and recommended Ed Fleming. That Mr. Fleming came and heard Sylvia Johnson’s story. That Mr. Fleming advised the girl against taking any action. That Sylvia Johnson then told Luella Moncravie she would not start any action against Henry Moncravie without first warning Mrs. Moncravie, and that the girl had kept her word.
The defendant, Mrs. Moncravie, testified that she had seen Sylvia Johnson the next day. That the girl talked over the future, saying she might go to Texas where she was not known and try a fresh start. That they then got Mr. L. C. Brown, who prepared the affidavit. That while there, Brown told Sylvia Johnson, “If you start anything against Henry Moncravie, Mrs. Moncravie will fight you like a tigress.” That Mr. Brown said this because he believed that defendant cared for her husband. That defendant then showed the affidavit to Henry Moncravie, and that he told her it was a lie, and that it was all blackmail. That the suit was only another effort by Sylvia Johnson to get his money. Defendant stated that she wanted to believe him, but there was strong evidence the other way.
Mrs. Moncravie testified that she had always tried to believe Henry innocent of wrongdoing. The defendant then outlined their previous problems.
August 8, 1916. Mrs. Moncravie sued Henry Moncravie for a divorce, alleging cruelty.
August 24, 1916. The suit for divorce was dismissed from court.
September 26, 1916. Mrs. Luella Moncravie brought a second suit for divorce, alleging cruelty. That defendant got a court order prohibiting her husband from visiting her residence after Henry Moncravie had gained entrance one night by climbing in a window.
The defendant offered the police court docket, and a lively tift between councils resulted. The court overruled the state’s objection.
Luella Moncravie identified an insulting letter written by Henry Moncravie to her, telling her not to get goods charged to him. Mrs. Moncravie testified that Henry Moncravie applied for a divorce in September, 1916. That he then came down and broke into her home, waking up Hazel, who made him leave. That the next time Henry Moncravie came to her home was about 2:00 a.m. That he got her up and choked her. That she then got a restraining order.
Mrs. Moncravie testified that Henry Moncravie was a most overmastering man as to personality, and that she constantly indulged the hope that he would reform. That in October, 1916, she made a trip to Wichita with him while the Bulgin revival was being held. That she had known Rev. Bulgin for years, and requested an usher to tell him that she was present; that Rev. Bulgin came back and spoke to her as Mrs. Clubb, and introduced her as Mrs. Clubb to his entire corps of assistants. That Henry Moncravie had returned meanwhile and heard this, and accused Mrs. Moncravie of being ashamed to use his name.
Luella Moncravie also testified concerning her suits for alimony and for divorce, and Judge Fuller’s orders allowing $20.00, and Henry Moncravie asking to have the order set aside. This order was then read in evidence by her counsel, A. M. Jackson.
The defendant then testified that she and Henry Moncravie again reconciled. That Hazel became sick and was in the hospital at Arkansas City; and that Henry Moncravie accused Luella Moncravie of intimacy with his brother, Charles Moncravie, who took the defendant to the hospital to see Hazel. That Mr. Moncravie had promised Hazel, while she was at the hospital, that he had agreed to buy a home and do right by Mrs. Moncravie.
Luella Moncravie testified that Henry Moncravie and the defendant tried to buy some property in Arkansas City from Clarence Mogle; and to secure money to pay for it, a trip was made to Cedar Vale to consult with Jerome Wilson with a view of getting some lease money in advance. That all of her plans were submitted to the Indian Agent at Pawhuska and approved. That during all of this time, Henry Moncravie had been painting the house, watching her all the time. That during the time they were living together, she noticed Henry Moncravie using dope.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s testimony continued through Tuesday and most of Wednesday, interrupted at times by the testimony of other witnesses.
Joe Matthews testified that when he served the divorce summons on Henry Moncravie, Mr. Moncravie denounced Charles Atkinson as a “blackmailer” and stated “someone would get hurt.”
Columbus Lytal, a real estate dealer of Arkansas City, testified to a conversation with Henry Moncravie, in which Mr. Moncravie stated that he did not intend to buy a home for “that squaw of mine” on earth. “I’d rather send her to hell.”
Resumption of Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s Testimony.
Mrs. Moncravie testified to a trip made by her and Henry Moncravie to Kansas City; and while there, he received a call from Pawhuska, presumed to be from Sylvia Johnson. That when they returned from this trip, she heard that Mr. Moncravie had gone to Pawhuska. That she later saw Henry Moncravie at Pawhuska and saw Sylvia Johnson at the hotel. That she talked to Miss Johnson. That she employed Detective Fooy on the recommendation of the chief of police at Pawhuska.
The defendant minutely refuted or corroborated testimony by other witnesses, but added a few words of explanation which put an entirely different meaning and construction on all that was intended by her.
Mrs. Moncravie testified about her trip to Missouri when she was handling the Boardman real estate transaction. That she was called up by a man from Joplin, Mo., who asked her some evasive questions. That she heard the man consulting with someone at his side. That this was in the morning. That same day she was surprised when she met Henry at a hotel in Seymour, Mo. That Henry Moncravie forced his society and association on herself and her friends in Seymour, and to avoid notoriety, she came back with him and stopped off at Wichita and called on Mrs. Keith, the hair dresser. Mrs. Moncravie testified that Mrs. Keith twisted the conversation defendant had with her.
The defendant testified to being Henry’s third wife. Luella Moncravie stated that she had told the second Mrs. Moncravie, Mamie, of Henry’s brutality. That Mamie responded: “I am not surprised.”
“Mamie Moncravie was granted a divorce from Henry E. Moncravie on June 15, 1914, in district court at Winfield, on cruelty charges.” Winfield Free Press.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie denied the statement she was supposed to have made to her neighbor, Mrs. Jones, after the shooting, and testified that she did not tell Mrs. Jones that Henry was teasing her. Mrs. Moncravie testified that she had told Mrs. Jones that she had shot Henry Moncravie and had told him she would if he didn’t stop beating her.
Mrs. Moncravie Tells of the Killing.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie testified that on June 1, 1917, she returned on the Midland Valley from Pawhuska and Henry met her at the train. That she asked him if he came to meet her and he said “No.” That she told him after a few minutes that she believed he lied when he said it. That they got into the taxi and went to the hospital to see Mrs. Fred Moncravie, wife of Henry’s brother. That they went home and her daughter, Hazel, was getting supper. That Henry Moncravie got mad at something and went uptown, and that she went up to see Mr. Boardman, after calling him up and making an appointment. That she saw Henry Moncravie uptown; and that Henry accused her of making a date with Boardman. That she saw Boardman in the company of Henry Moncravie, and that Henry followed her home. That on the way he attempted a reconciliation and she refused. That when they reached home, Hazel called her to supper. That Henry urged her to take a last meal with him at Fox’s house. That she did so and Henry was “perfectly lovely” during supper. That on their walk from town back to her house, she had told Henry Moncravie what Sylvia Johnson had told her at Pawhuska and that Henry at once laid all this trouble onto Sewell Beekman and said he had determined to kill Sewell, but had changed his mind. That Henry Moncravie begged the defendant to forgive him and they would go away to some faraway place and be happy.
Mrs. Moncravie testified that they met little Ruby Conrad, and she went on with them. That they went into the Moncravie home and Henry and the child went into the kitchen, where they began playing with dominoes. That while they were in there, her daughter, Hazel, called her aside and whispered to her that Henry Moncravie had been at the house that day and tried to put his arms around Hazel. The defendant stated that she was shocked, but said nothing.
Luella Moncravie testified that she announced to Henry Moncravie and the little girl, Ruby Conrad, that she was going to the show with the young people, but Henry wanted her to stay. That after a few minutes, Henry cried, “Well, d__n it, go!” That Mr. Moncravie then left the house. That she got ready to go to the theater and that Ruby Conrad told her that Henry Moncravie had gone off towards town.
She testified that as she and the little girl went to leave the house, Henry Moncravie came up and pushed Mrs. Moncravie back into the house. That he then locked the door in little Ruby’s face and only laughed when Mrs. Moncravie objected. That she then told him of his treatment of Hazel, but he laughed and said that the girl misunderstood him. That Mrs. Moncravie replied, “Henry, that girl is all I have in the world. Stay away from her. Don’t you dare touch her.”
Luella Moncravie testified that Henry Moncravie laughed and pushed her down into a chair; and then he knelt by her side and said, “Lue, Hazel misunderstood me. I meant no wrong.” That Mr. Moncravie then reached over and pulled down the window shade and told her that he wanted to talk to her, their last talk, he said, if she persisted in going away and leaving him. That she arose and went for a drink in the kitchen. That he followed. That she went to the door and found that the key to unlock it was gone. That he grabbed her and sat her down into a chair and told her of his love for her and his desire for her. That she refused him and he seized her wrists. That he got very angry, and said, “Go to hell.”
The defendant testified that Henry Moncravie then sat down in a chair. That Henry Moncravie said, “That girl of yours is too smart. You and her will be in the gutter.” That Henry demanded, “Who is your lover? Who is it you are saving it for? Who is your pimp? I ought to kill you. I made my other wives do as I wanted. Why am I so easy with you?” That Henry Moncravie asked, “Are you going to do what I asked you to do?” That she once more refused. “Then I will kill you,” he cried, and picked up a chair. That she ran from the room to the next and picked up the phone and dropped the receiver, but no one at Central seemed to notice it. That she then got her gun and said, “Henry, stand back.” That he exclaimed, “God d__m you, I’ll get you now.”
Winfield Free Press: “At this point in her testimony, Mrs. Luella Moncravie broke, struggling for mastery of herself. She soon continued.”
Mrs. Luella Moncravie testified that Henry Moncravie cried, “Go on and shoot.” That with a fiendish face he rushed forward, seized the gun, and it exploded with a deafening sound. That she staggered back, overcome with horror, and cried, “Henry, did that hit you?”
The Winfield Courier reported: “As Mrs. Moncravie reached the point in her narrative where she had shot Henry Moncravie, a look of horror came to her face, and for a moment or two, she looked like an entirely different woman. Mrs. Moncravie then covered her face with her hands and shook and sobbed until the entire courtroom seemed to ‘telepathically vibrate.’ She continued with her testimony.”
Luella Moncravie testified that Henry Moncravie made no reply, but turned and walked to the door and unlocked it. That he took the key out of his pocket to do this. That he then disappeared from her sight.
Then in a broken voice, the defendant told the remainder of her story. She testified that she tried to get a physician, but could not remember whether or not she was successful. That she ran out to look for Henry, and that she spoke to her neighbor, Mrs. Jones. That when she found Henry Moncravie, several strangers were gathered around him. That she asked him, “Why didn’t you tell me that I hit you?” That she tried to hold his head, but he said, “Don’t touch me. Take her away.” That Henry spoke these words to Allie Gilbert, who was assisting the wounded man.
Mrs. Moncravie then testified that she believed Henry Moncravie would have hurt her if the gun had not exploded. That his face was horrible as he rushed at her.
The defendant then left the stand.
Letters Read from Mamie Moncravie.
Mr. Jackson, the defense counsel, read several letters from Henry Moncravie’s second wife, Mamie Moncravie. One of these letters was especially horrible, and even though portions of it were omitted, it showed that Mamie Moncravie had contemplated suicide.
Jury to Vote on Holding Court on Thanksgiving.
Judge Fuller announced that during the noon hour, the jury would take a vote on the question of holding court the next day, which was Thanksgiving.
The jury decided to honor the holiday.
Still More Letters from Mamie Moncravie.
In the afternoon Mr. W. L. Cunningham continued the reading of letters from Mamie Moncravie to the deceased. These letters accused Henry Moncravie of infidelity. One letter accused him of “going crazy over women,” and revealed that Mamie Moncravie was threatening to “go wrong” in retaliation. Mamie Moncravie accused Henry Moncravie of tricking her into a mock marriage. She said, “Fix up a harem, that is the life for you;” and “go on with your w____s.” These letters also accused Henry Moncravie of defaming his second wife before his daughter, Eunice, and stated that Mrs. Mamie Moncravie couldn’t even look out the window without being accused of “flirting.” One of the letters showed that she urged him to go into business.
Cross-Examination of Mrs. Luella Moncravie.
At 3:05 p.m., Wednesday, November 28, 1917, Mrs. Luella Moncravie resumed the stand for cross-examination, conducted by Mr. McDermott. Mrs. Moncravie met his questions without flinching and her answers were low but clear.
Winfield Free Press: “Mr. McDermott began with her first marriage to Jim Clubb, asking questions studiously calculated to confuse and bewilder the witness.”
The county attorney asked, “Did you, while married to Jim Clubb, make a trip to Hot Springs with a man named Rufus Marks?” The defendant replied, “I did not.”
The attorney persisted: “Was the trip the cause of the separation of you and your first husband?” This was also emphatically denied by the defendant, who denied having any trouble with Mr. Clubb about other men. After a few more questions on this line, the county attorney abandoned that line of attack.
During the cross-examination, Mrs. Luella Moncravie suddenly asked the prosecutor if he had not already picked out a cell for her at the penitentiary.
The county attorney did not respond, but continued with his examination.
He asked her many questions on trivial matters which had little bearing on the case.
Then the prosecuting attorney jumped to her first acquaintance with Henry Moncravie, and she denied any association with Mr. Moncravie before his recent wife was divorced. The defendant denied ever being out with Henry and his second wife, testifying that she was once with Henry Moncravie and several of his lady friends in Mr. Moncravie’s car.
Mr. McDermott cross-examined her in detail as to her various separations. Mrs. Moncravie testified that she and Henry Moncravie had trouble and separated in July 1915. That they were using the furniture of the defendant. She denied throwing a cup of coffee on Henry Moncravie.
Luella Moncravie did not remember that Henry Moncravie had been ordered to pay her $60.00 per month alimony, and the state read the court order proving it.
The court sustained an objection to Mr. McDermott asking the defendant about “Henry’s life being sealed by her act.”
Cross-examined as to her trip to Seymour, Missouri, Mrs. Moncravie denied ever meeting any man there, who proved to be a Moncravie detective, and asking him to keep the incidents of her trip there secret. The defendant testified that she knew a man in Seymour named Stone; and that she and Henry Moncravie had visited at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Stone. Mrs. Moncravie denied that Henry Moncravie objected to her passing things to the man at the table; or snapping her finger at Henry Moncravie.
The defendant did admit that she kicked Henry Moncravie and called him a “d_____ liar.” She denied ever saying that she would kill Henry Moncravie and “prove self defense.”
Mrs. Moncravie denied telling Mrs. Monroe that she had separated Henry and his second wife. She testified that Mrs. Monroe did more talking about the wealth of the Moncravies than the defendant.
In discussing the Rhodes testimony, the defendant testified she had asked Rhodes to sit with her in a swing not to make Henry jealous but to talk to Rhodes about Hazel’s school; and that she asked Rhodes to quit playing pitch with Henry Moncravie, so that Mr. Moncravie would come home.
Mrs. Moncravie denied asking J. H. McElhinney to get her husband mixed up in a girl or whiskey scrape at Kansas City.
The defendant denied asking John Paris to get a gun for her while in Pawhuska. She described her actions there and told of finding Henry Moncravie at the home of Mrs. Bruce.
Mrs. Moncravie testified that when she returned to Arkansas City from Pawhuska, Henry Moncravie met her at the train, asking, “Is it safe for me to ride with you?” That she answered, “I suppose so.”
The defendant testified that Henry Moncravie left her house shortly after they reached there from the hospital when they both visited Mrs. John Moncravie. That soon after Mrs. Moncravie went to see Mr. Boardman on a real estate deal. That on the way she met Henry Moncravie and he wanted to go with her. That she did not want him to go to the real estate office and told him so.
Most of the time Mrs. Moncravie positively refused to answer questions “Yes” and “No.” The defendant insisted on her right to explain each answer fully and in detail.
The Free Press reporter commented:
“The present trial is one of the most hard fought cases ever tried here. It has been marked by fierce legal battles since the beginning. The honors seem about even in this regard, both sides having had certain evidence ruled out.
“The Moncravie case has been rich in dramatic episodes and human interest. It has also unfolded much of the brutality and depravity of man. Sensation after sensation has been disclosed, putting to shame the wildest dreams of many a scenario writer.
“From beginning to end there has been plot and counter-plot, intrigue, and jealousy. Human passions and ambitions have run the gamut.”
The Courier stated the following about the case.
“Mrs. Moncravie has made an exceptionally good witness and is generally cool and collected. Thus far it is Ruby Conrad, who has been her main witness; but for this little girl, and what she saw, Mrs. Moncravie might have been accused of entrapping Moncravie in the house and locking the door and then shooting him.”
At 5:35 p.m., court adjourned until Friday morning, November 30, 1917.
Resumption of Cross-Examination of Mrs. Moncravie.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie resumed the stand for further cross-examination by the state on Friday morning.
Mr. McDermott was more in form and his cross-examination was more comprehensive.
The defendant was fully cross-examined on every possible phase of the case and made a full denial to everything of importance against her.
Mr. McDermott asked her one question, which caused an audible smile in the courtroom.
The county attorney asked, “After the motion to suppress the depositions were filed, didn’t you say that it would be an awful thing to blacken Henry’s reputation?” Mrs. Moncravie replied that she had.
One of the defendant’s most startling accusations was that Henry Moncravie asked her to let him have her picture taken in a partly nude condition.
Miss Hazel Clubb.
Miss Hazel Clubb, daughter of the defendant, was the next witness. She corroborated her mother’s testimony on many points. On being questioned as to when she had seen bruises on her mother, she answered that there was never a time her mother was not carrying bruises inflicted by Henry Moncravie.
The witness told of Henry Moncravie sneaking around the house and breaking into it on two occasions. Miss Clubb testified that on the first occasion, Henry Moncravie broke in upstairs and came down and woke Hazel Clubb up while quarreling with her mother; the next time, Henry Moncravie came in the kitchen window and caught his foot on the curtain and fell. That she ran out to see what the trouble was, and asked him what he wanted, and he said he wanted to “talk to ma.”
The witness described the time on the day of the killing when Henry Moncravie came to the house and tried to embrace her. She was washing the dinner dishes when he arrived and asked for her mother, and Hazel Clubb informed Mr. Moncravie that her mother would return that evening. She testified that all at once Henry Moncravie came closer and asked, “Why don’t you like me, Hazel?” That he then said, “I want you to love me, Hazel,” and put his arm around her. That she pushed him away and told him never to speak to her like that again. That she threatened to call the police and told Henry Moncravie that he was not dealing with “momma now.” That soon after Henry Moncravie left the house.
Hazel Clubb’s description of events on the night of the killing fully corroborated the testimony of her mother and Ruby Conrad up to the time she went to the picture show with Mr. Winters.
Miss Clubb testified that Henry Moncravie had said that he would kill Mrs. Moncravie before he would lose her; that he would blacken her name so no one would want her. She also testified that several times she had seen Henry Moncravie “eating snow.”
Miss Clubb testified that after the shooting, while sweeping the room, she found the bullet on the floor and the splinter which it had chipped off the dresser.
Defense Reads Two More Depositions.
The defense read from “censored depositions.” The first was testimony given by a brother of the first Mrs. Moncravie, Win Van Orsdale, a soldier stationed at Ft. Sheridan, Illinois, which told of Henry Moncravie’s brutality and drunkenness as he had seen it. The second deposition was from Dr. Samuel A. Van Orsdale of Sterling, Nebraska. Dr. Van Orsdale testified to similar acts of brutality, and of having treated Henry Moncravie, who had the most loathsome venereal disease known. That on the same occasion when he treated Henry, he also treated his sister, Henry’s first wife, for the same disease.
The defense then rested.
State in Rebuttal.
The state produced witnesses from Cedar Vale, who were acquainted with Henry Moncravie and his first wife.
Judge Fuller at this time ruled on objections of the defense, that Henry’s actual physical condition during the time of his first marriage was immaterial, but it was material whether or not Mrs. Moncravie, the defendant, had possessed any information to lead her to believe that Henry Moncravie was and had been diseased, whether her information was true or false. That her belief at the time of the shooting must govern.
John Towery of Arkansas City, manager of the telephone company, identified telephone records showing all of the phone calls to and from Mrs. Moncravie’s phone, during the months of March to June, inclusive. This record showed a total of 28 calls; most of them being between Sylvia Johnson and Mrs. Moncravie. The witness stated on cross-examination that these records did not show who did the actual talking, any further than the supposition that whoever put in the call would do it.
There was no call shown on the record from Mrs. Moncravie at Pawhuska to her husband at Arkansas City, as had been alleged by the state in their opening statement.
More Witnesses Called.
More witnesses were produced, but they did not substantially add vital information.
Argument Given by Fleming.
The argument was opened for the state by Assistant County Attorney Fleming, who said that the issue was, “Is this murder or is it self-defense? If this defendant had in her mind, at the time she fired the shot, the desire to kill Henry Moncravie, the offense would be murder; if, she feared death or great bodily harm, the act would be justifiable.”
Picking up the gun used by the defendant, Mr. Fleming asked, “What was the natural thing for Henry Moncravie to do? Attack with his bare hands, this woman with a gun pointed at him, after he ran when she had merely picked up a flashlight, and before she could point it at him, he thinking at the time it was a gun?”
Fleming scathingly quoted Luella Moncravie’s protestation of love from the witness stand, in contrast to her supposed “contemptuous remarks about Moncravie as an Indian.”
His climax in substance was, that throughout it all, courtship and marriage, it was Luella Moncravie’s plan to get Henry Moncravie’s money at all hazards; by divorce if possible. That failing; then by murder.
At 8:30 p.m., Friday, November 30, 1917, Mr. Fleming closed.
Judge Fuller admonished the jury with unusual solemnity, and took a recess until Saturday at 8:00 a.m.
Argument Given by Cunningham.
Court convened promptly at eight o’clock on Saturday morning. The first argument was made by W. L. Cunningham for the defense, who commented that a jury of women should have tried this case as no man could know what regret and longing a woman suffers when she is ill treated. He closed by reading from the court’s instructions regarding the law of self-defense.
Argument Given by Beekman.
Mr. C. S. Beekman, son of the late Judge J. V. Beekman, followed Mr. Cunningham. He said, “Man is prone to be generous with woman, and it is well that this is so. But women sometimes presume on this generosity, and men are sometimes called upon to do a disagreeable duty.”
He finished by saying: “Henry Moncravie’s lips are sealed and he cannot say a word in his own behalf, and every time his wife speaks, it is to save her liberty on the one hand, and an Osage fortune on the other.”
Argument Given by Atkinson.
C. T. Atkinson, for the state, followed. He criticized defense counsel, Mr. Jackson, and the defendant in her “persistent prompting of her counsel,” in a sarcastic address, and centered his argument on the testimony of Mrs. Morris, who quoted Mrs. Moncravie as saying, “I’ll break him or I’ll kill him.”
Mr. Atkinson quoted the testimony of Florence Moncravie, a defense witness, to the effect that the first wife had died from an abortion inflicted by herself.
Argument Given by Jackson.
Mr. Jackson, the last speaker for the defense, began by saying, “I regret more than I can tell you that there ever existed such a beast as Henry Moncravie: a man who had his many friends, and a pleasing personality. I regret the death and downfall of the women and young girls who have been his victims; but I rejoice that this scene is drawing to a close, and that you will soon vindicate this woman, who fired this shot in behalf of the girls and young women of the land.”
“The world,” continued Mr. Jackson, “is all right; we look at things from different viewpoints, tastes, and personalities.” He then asked the jury, if looking at the matter from any point of view, they could say that Mrs. Luella Moncravie could or should have done differently from what she did.
Jackson sarcastically referred to the state, and the efforts of Detective W. S. Gilleland of Wichita, hired by the state, who while not testifying, had secured the evidence—or a great deal of it—against Mrs. Moncravie and frequently advised with the attorneys representing the state.
He portrayed the many brutalities of Henry Moncravie, and the courtroom was silent as the grave, as he began to recite all of Moncravie’s misdeeds. Jackson described how Henry Moncravie had deliberately caused the death of his first wife, and of her pleas of “Henry, please let me alone, just tonight.”
Jackson continued, “The state sees a necessity for a motive, and therefore they charge blackmail; they tell you about the scene in the Walnut Rooms, and then in the same breath that she blamed Henry at Pawhuska because he had not settled for $1,000 when he could. Bird and Vaughn were to get 30 percent of this; Fooy was to get $250. Now what was there left for Mrs. Moncravie to get?”
Mr. Jackson spoke of Beekman’s alleged treachery. He took up Mr. Fleming’s explanation of the Caldwell trip. “Isn’t it wonderful that Henry Moncravie never showed a bruise?” In taking up the testimony of the Grainola telephone operator, Mr. Jackson said, “Sylvia Johnson did not tell the truth.”
In describing the death scene, Jackson said, “If Henry Moncravie was trapped that night, why did he push little Ruby out of the way and lock that door, and pull down the blind? Was this a trap? If so, what for? Whose trap was it?”
He then pictured Mrs. Moncravie with the gun in her hand and telling Henry Moncravie to stand back. He asked, “If this had been a plot to kill Henry Moncravie, would she have let him leave the house alive?”
Jackson said, “The state has said Henry’s lips are sealed. It is a lie! Did he not have every opportunity to accuse his wife while the crowd was gathered around him? In answer to all of their questions, he simply said, “I’m shot.”
“Henry Moncravie heard his wife say, ‘I shot him. I had to do it.’ He was not brave enough to tell the truth; and in the presence of his God, was too big a coward to lie. From the depths of his hatred, he said, ‘Don’t let her touch me.’”
Argument by McDermott.
At 1:35 p.m., Saturday, December 1, 1917, Mr. McDermott, the county attorney in charge of the prosecution for the state, began his argument for the state, which closed the case.
He criticized Mr. Jackson, stating that he did not do his duty by urging the acquittal of Mrs. Moncravie simply because Henry Moncravie deserved killing on general principles.
The state prosecutor referred to the argument of the defense as proving conclusively that there was premeditation. That if the defendant fired that shot in behalf of the “womanhood of the land,” then there was premeditation. Mr. McDermott stated that if Henry Moncravie had “reaped what he had sown,” then the “defendant was the reaper.”
McDermott referred to the work of detective Fooy, and Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s trips to Pawhuska as being a part of one grand blackmail scheme. He spoke of Sewell Beekman’s manner of handling the Pawhuska situation as being the only possible way to handle it and that Beekman’s plan had succeeded in smoking out Luella Moncravie as the leader of the plan.
County Attorney McDermott mentioned the property believed by Mrs. Luella Moncravie, according to her alimony petition, to be at from $40,000 to $100,000.
He defined the meaning of the expression, “great bodily harm.”
McDermott ridiculed the contention of the defendant that Henry Moncravie was diseased, as she had never shown any evidence of it yet in its effect on herself.
His argument was clear and concise, taking about 45 minutes.
Jury Instructions by Judge Fuller.
Instructions to the jury by Judge Fuller covered all of the various degrees of unlawful homicide, and explained the penalty for each. Special stress was placed on the proposition of self-defense, and the court stated that the danger feared by the defendant need not necessarily be real. The question was, “Did she believe that at the time she fired the shot, that she was in immediate danger of death or great bodily harm from Henry Moncravie.” The court also instructed the jury that under the laws of Kansas and Oklahoma, a conviction of murder would preclude the right of Mrs. Luella Moncravie to inherit her husband’s property.
The jury was out seven hours and forty-five minutes. During a half hour of this time, the men were without light, the courthouse being in darkness when a connection burned out.
The verdict was not immediately read as Attorney Cunningham, after a whispered conference with the defendant, asked the court not to read the verdict until Mr. Jackson, chief defense council, arrived. The attorney could not be reached by phone. Sheriff Day and County Attorney McDermott went for him in a car. They returned at 11:45 p.m.
Winfield Free Press:
“Mrs. Luella Moncravie had been sitting in a terrible strain for almost a half hour and her face was very pale. The court then took up the verdict and looked at it. Judge Fuller then handed it to Mrs. Anna L. Tonkinson, deputy clerk of the court, who read it in open court. The courtroom, in sharp contrast to its condition of the past two weeks, was silent and deserted. Only five people were sitting in the room proper and only a few court followers and newspapermen heard the final proceedings in the big murder case.”
“We the jury in the above entitled action do find the defendant guilty of manslaughter in the Third Degree.”
For a moment all was stillness, then the judge said “Poll the jury.” Each juryman answered that the verdict was concurred in by him. Then court adjourned and all filed out as the big clock on the courthouse struck twelve.
Comments About Verdict.
The Winfield Courier said, “The comment on the streets soon showed that the verdict met with popular approval. It seemed to reflect the evident opinion of the jury that while the killing of Henry Moncravie was, under the circumstances, and for the good of society, a justifiable act, that Mrs. Moncravie should not profit financially by it, at the expense of Moncravie’s daughter by his first wife, Eunice. That this verdict as near acquitted Mrs. Moncravie as it is possible to do and yet prevents her from inheriting the property of the dead Indian.”
The Arkansas City Daily Traveler stated: “The penalty on this verdict is from three years in the penitentiary, down to six months in the county jail. The sentence will be passed by Judge Fuller at the close of the present term of the district court session.”
Developments After Verdict.
On Wednesday, December 11, 1918, the Traveler reported that the Moncravie case still had the same status as it did on the day the motion for a mistrial was denied when Mrs. Luella Moncravie’s attorney, Mr. Jackson, filed a motion for a new trial, except that the clerk of the court has prepared and sent to Topeka the regular trial abstract.
The last legal moves in the Moncravie case were given.
December 1, 1917: Mrs. Luella Moncravie convicted of manslaughter by a jury in district court at Winfield.
February 4, 1918: Motion for a new trial argued and denied.
March 1, 1918: Motion for a new trial overruled. Notice of appeal to the supreme court filed. Bond fixed at $3,000.
March 5, 1918: Commitment issued.
March 15, 1918: Comment for extension of time filed.
June 5, 1918: Copies necessary for appeal to supreme court made.
The Traveler article stated the following.
“Under the law the defendant has two years in which to appeal, so Mrs. Moncravie has until December 1, 1919, before supplying the supreme court with the abstracts of the evidence. This must be made by the stenographer of the court and it will require at least a month of hard work to transcribe the mass of evidence in the case.
“Mrs. Moncravie is under sentence to the Women’s Industrial Home at Lansing. She must serve her minimum sentence, taken as two years, before she is subject to pardon or parole by the state board of administration.
“No new move has been made in the case lately, court followers said today.”
Then, on Monday, December 16, 1918, the Traveler reported on further developments.
“Mrs. Luella Moncravie went alone to Lansing one day last week, it is said, and gave herself over to the authorities to begin serving her sentence. The sentence is from six months to three years in the women’s industrial ward.”
The Traveler issue of December 16, 1918, further reported that County Attorney McDermott did not know of this feature of the case until apprized of the fact by the Traveler reporter. “The time for filing the appeal in the state supreme court expired yesterday; therefore, it is very probable that the sheriff would have served the commitment upon Mrs. Moncravie today, had she been here or at large any place since. The transcript in the appeal was never filed by her attorney, Judge A. M. Jackson, although he had contended he would appeal. Judge Jackson told the county attorney today that he would now dismiss the appeal.”
Mrs. Luella Moncravie Writes Letter.
On Thursday, January 9, 1919, the Traveler printed a letter sent by Mrs. Luella Moncravie from the Women’s Industrial Farm, Lansing, Kansas, on January 6th, describing the changes made by Mrs. Julia Perry, the superintendent of this facility for women, which was built after the state penitentiary became too crowded in May, 1917, wherein cottages, without locks or bars, were built and only a certain number of women were to be placed in each one. She described how the immense wire fence placed around the farm had been removed by Mrs. Perry.
She wrote, “Since July 3, 1918, over 500 women have been housed, treated, and cared for, both with regard to their physical and moral condition.” She stated that the farm “is a sort of moral hospital, so recognized by the U. S. Government, and the only institution of its kind that exists anywhere. Over 200 women are to be sent here as soon as the flu quarantine is raised.” She commented: “No one is allowed to be idle on this farm. There is plenty of work for all and everyone is expected to do their share.”
Mrs. Luella Moncravie Paroled by Governor Capper.
On January 13, 1919, the Traveler reported that word was received in Arkansas City Sunday to the effect that Mrs. Luella Moncravie had been granted a parole from the Women’s Industrial Farm at Lansing, and that she was en route to her home in this city. Her daughter, Mrs. Hazel Winters, went to Topeka to meet her. She stated today that Governor Capper had signed the parole for her mother last Saturday. Numerous letters of appeal from businessmen of Arkansas City were sent to Governor Capper, asking that Mrs. Moncravie be paroled or pardoned.
Mrs. Luella Moncravie Wins Her Case in U. S. Court at Guthrie.
The Monday, April 7, 1919, issue of the Arkansas City Daily Traveler contained startling developments.
“Mrs. Luella Moncravie reports that she has won her case in the United States court at Guthrie, for a one-half interest in the estate of the late Henry Moncravie, her husband, who was shot and killed by her on June 1, 1917. The case was decided last Saturday, it is said. The other half of the valuable Osage estate goes to the daughter of the late Henry Moncravie, Eunice, who is now married and resides at Pawhuska, Oklahoma.
“Jackson & Noble of Winfield, Mrs. Moncravie’s attorneys, won the suit for her.”
Mrs. Moncravie Wins in U. S. Court of Appeals.
Almost a year later, the Traveler reported on March 31, 1920, the final chapter in the case of Luella Moncravie.
“Half of the Oklahoma estate of Henry Moncravie, Osage Indian, will go to his widow, Mrs. Luella Clubb Moncravie, of Arkansas City, according to a decision of the United States Court of Appeals at St. Louis. This information was received by Judge A. M. Jackson, attorney for Mrs. Moncravie, Tuesday afternoon, says the Winfield Courier. The message states that the decision of the U. S. Court at Guthrie in this case has been affirmed.
“Mrs. Moncravie sued in the Oklahoma courts for half of her deceased husband’s estate. Other heirs of the estate opposed on the ground that the widow had been convicted in Kansas of manslaughter, she having killed her husband by shooting him at Arkansas City. Mrs. Moncravie won in the Oklahoma courts and the other heirs appealed the case to the federal court.
“Both Kansas and Oklahoma, in common with most of the state, have laws that a person who is convicted of killing another cannot inherit from the person killed. The courts held in Mrs. Moncravie’s favor on the ground that in each of the states it is a penal statute enforceable only in the state in which the alleged crime is committed; and that Oklahoma cannot enforce the penal statutes of Kansas nor add to the punishment pronounced by a Kansas court. This was the line of argument pursued by Judge Jackson in fighting the case through the courts. The affirmation by the circuit court ends the case. It only remains to carry out the necessary formalities in the lower courts of Oklahoma.
“Mrs. Moncravie was tried in the district court at Winfield and was convicted of manslaughter. She was sentenced; but was pardoned by Governor Capper after about five weeks in the women’s industrial farm at Lansing.
“Before marrying Moncravie she was Mrs. Luella Clubb, one of the leading society women of Arkansas City. After being divorced from her husband, she married Moncravie, an Osage with a considerable matrimonial experience. Their domestic life became somewhat stormy, according to her testimony in the trial, and finally resulted in her shooting him.
“Moncravie’s estate comprises in part, six hundred and forty acres of land in the Osage, the value of which together with annuities and royalties, is estimated at not less than a hundred thousand dollars. Mrs. Moncravie will, therefore, come into about fifty thousand dollars. She will probably receive a considerable income from the oil rights in the property.”