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NAME ADDRESS AGE Consequences of a Dance in Gatesville \(Continued from Page Chappell said, “Gatesville, you knowit’s just a little community. There used to be several white girls who’d all dance at Brown’s and another cafe, Al & Mac’s. Nobody ever paid any attention.” Last February the cedar chopper and the two daughters were living in an unfurnished rock “clubhouse” in the city park outside Crawford, a town of 400 souls, more or less, 30 miles from Gatesville toward Waco. T h e father was chopping cedar posts for a farmer near Turnersville. The girls were attending school, but the town. did not take to its bosom these itinerants who lived in the city park, bought very little, and kept to themselves. “I don’t replace them right now,” said Roy Miller, the town’s postmaster. When told they had lived in the park clubhouse, he responded, “I remember ’em now. Those people.” He thumbed through his register. “Didn’t even leave a forwarding address. Those woodchoppers you knowhe just blew in and blew out. They wouldn’t have any business with me.” They did have a little business with Bill Crouch, who runs a filling station and sells a few groceries inside. “One-armed fella,” he said the woodchopper was. “I wouldn’t know his wife if I saw ‘er. Or his girls. I’d know him because he was a one-armed fella.” They left the town four or five months ago, he said. Out at the park, the man and wife who live at “the keeper’s house” came to the door to tell about the family who had lived in the clubhouse next door to t h e m. “Yeah, he live here, awraht,” said the man. “About two months.” Was his ex-wife with him? “I dang if I know,” he said. “They didn’t have no place to live.” Had the girls been in any trouble? No. Where were they now? He was in Brownwood maybe; she might be working in Clifton. “I tell you,” the wife volunteered from the shadows, “the onliest way you can find out is to try her mother’s house in Gatesville.” Their home in the woods last winter was a rock structure with two rooms and a patio. What doors there are hang grotesquely from their hinges; the windows are broken; there is a wash basin in one room protected from rain and wind, but not cold; the other room is open at the sides, as one would expect in a park clubhouse. Negro Reports It Nobody was home one day this week at the mother’s matchbox house beside a grain elevator near the Negro section in Gatesville. Perhaps ‘ that Saturday in February they had gone in to visit her and stopped for a meal at the Negro cafe. A deputy sheriff who figured in the case against the Negroes said, “Well, those damn buck niggers, you know, they went to dancin’ with ‘ern … “It was in that little ole cafe down at nigger hill. We let ’em do pretty much what they want to down therethey drink a little beer, dance, shoot a little dice, you knowthey have all their own business, you know.” Donald Williams, the brother of Lacy Williams, the man who plead guilty and paid his fine, was in the cafe that night. He said three Negroes, including one about 40 years old, were dancing with the girls. This third Negro, whom he named, told the officers about the dancing, he said. How did Donald Williams know this? “I heard him. The law drove up there, and he said, `Mr. Winfred, Old Jay saw .somethin’ he didn’t like. They ‘uz in there dancin’ with some white girls.’ I didn’t think nothin’, and next thing I knew they were out lookin’ for ’em. Beat all I ever seen.” Sheriff Cummings remembers the night this way: “A colored boy came up to my office and reported what was going on, and said the colored people didn’t like that and there was gonna be trouble. When we got there the girls, and the daddy and mother both, had just left… “The girls said that the colored boys made ’em dance with ’em . The colored boys said they didn’t make ’em. One of the girls said one of them took her by the arm and pulled her out of her seat.” The cedar chopper’s family were driving that night in “an old Fordabout a ’40-somewheres Ford, ’46 it seems to me like, or ’42,” he remembered. What law had they violated? “Both of those girls were teenagers, and you can walk up and slap a teenage girl on the back and You can go to the pen,” the sheriff said. Monday morning, March 2, complaints were filed against the mother and father that they “unlawfully and willfully” contributed to the delinquency of their minor children “by carrying them to a negro restaurant and dance hall and encouraging and permitting them to associate with and dance with negro men.” The fine and costs totaled $221.45 for each of them. If people can’t pay fines in Coryell County, they can “lay them out” at $3 a day. This the mother and father did from March 1, 1959, to May 12; 1959. That afternoon the Negroes were charged with committing “aggravated assault in and upon” the minor girls. \(Both complaints plead guilty, the other was released on $500 bond. ‘The Point Was .. . Johnnie Snow, a Negro mechanic who, with his uncle, went Chappell’s bond, was also in the cafe the night of the episode. “I know my place,” he said. “I keep it, and I think every individual should … But to be frank with you, I never believe I know every individual in town and I think they know better.” He said he didn’t notice anything the night of the dancing. “The point was,” he said, “they came and sat down and had a meal. Then somehow the music went to playin’ and some of the kids started dancing. I don’t know, maybe the girls got up. with her and then went to Ternple.” A Negro woman was approaching Snow and the reporter: Snow looked toward her and said: “Now what I’m about to say I’d say it in the cou’thouse. You see that girl there? She and you could get my neck broke. You know what I mean?” Not quite, the reporter said. “If she got in the car with you, and went all around with you, there wouldn’t / Goldberg for Mrs. R. Dear Sirs: Please inform our Democratic friends that talk of spliti and dissension among Harris County Democrats is only wishful thinking on the part of the opposition. From time to time there are differences of opinion but we are a Democratic organization and make our decisions through democratic processes. One of the things there has never been any difference about is our support of Mrs. R. D. Randolph for reelection as National CommitteeWoman. Billy B. Goldberg, Attorney, 505 Melrose Bldg., Houston. \(The writer is a member of the State Democratic executive cornAgrees with Jones ‘Sirs: Mr. Jones of Quito, Ecador, raised an interesting question and a difficult one , over what advertising should be accepted by a newspaper; but I think I am inclined to favor his stand. I agree with your distinction between false advertising and honest advertising that we merely disagree with. The one should be refused and the other as a rule accepted, but to carry the argument to an extreme but I think logical end, should a newspaper accept an ad, say from a Murder, Incorporated? I would say not. A principle is even more important than freedom sometimes. And does a liberal newspaper editor have a responsibility to represent all segments of society such as the white citizens council or a steel company with pronounced jingoist tendencies? \(Such illiberal elements are usually well repreMrs. Donald Lauderdale, 6601 Nasco Drive, Austin. be nothin’ I could do about it. But if I got in the car with your wifeyou know what I mean?” The girls went to Gainesville. Miss Maxine Burlingham, superintendent at Gainesville, said that ten days after the new charges arrived there nine social and case workers conferred at length about them and decided they were not delinquents and could not benefit from the program at Gainesville. “We felt it was more a case of parental delinquency than juvenile delinquency,” she told the Observer. “One of those little girls was very naiveI mean, to a really pitiful extent, and we felt that our school would be damaging to them …They were not delinquent.” ‘A Number of Reasons’ Judge Storm is young for a county judge, in his mid-thirties. Round-faced, serious in manner, he conducts his business in a small office overlooking one side of the town square and the A&P across the street. His walls are decorated by six commercial calendars and his commission as a judge, signed by Price Daniel. He also presides over his unpretentious courtroom from a plain business desk on a low platform. Facing him and the four high windows opening onto the square behind him are the lawyers around a conference table and the spectators behind a wooden railing. Why did he send two girls to reform school and two adults to jail and fine a fifth adult? “As I understand it,” he said, “aggravated assault between two men on the street must be more than a fist. But if the same person hits a peace officer or a judge or a woman with a fist, it can be aggravated assault. An aggravated assault can be committed against a woman just by the actsthe way they were dancing. That’s the interpretation the county attorney gave me.” What evidence had he of aggravated assault? “Actually there was no testimony before me,” he said. “The colored people are the ones that made the complaint. They were the ones that notified the police, I understand.” The Observer informed him that the girls had been judged not delinquent at Gainesville ten days after they arrived and transferred to Corsicana. Why had he sent them to Gainesville? “A number of reasons,” he said, “not purely that they …” \(he did he had no testimony before him but had been told in effect he should be concerned about the personal behavior of the girls, or at least the older one. The cedar chopper-father, he said, had been in the pen himself, for theft; the mother had been married to the man. convicted of increst with her older daughter. “They went to this dancethe father and mother more or less encouraged this thing,” he said. “Anyway there was some of the Negro leaders that lived in that area were the ones that made the complaint, and they were the ones that reported the manner in which they were dancing.” Would similar punishments have been meted out in the same situation had the dancers been all white? Judge Storm said yes, if a complaint had been filed. “Of course, if they’d been white,” he said, “nothing would have happened probably nobody would have noticed.” Dancing ‘Part of It’ The county attorney, T o in Mears, is 88 years old. He was mayor of Gatesville 14 years and county attorney ten years. He came back as a favor to county officials two years ago. His hearing aid shows at his shirt front, and he seems old, but not as old as a man nearing his 89th birthday. His philosophy of his role as county attorney: “There’s only three ways through my officepay-a-fine, make-a-bond, or goto-jail. It don’t make any difference to me. I don’t try the cases, I just present the evidence.” “One of those damn niggers was married and told her \(one of the every other kind of damn devil,” Mears said. Why had the girls been sent to Gainesville? “Because they was neglectedand truant,” he said. A year or so back the stepfather went to jail for incest with on one of them, he said. The dancing, he allowed, “was part of it, probably started it. They needed protection, and hell they didn’t have it at home. Judge Storm sent ’em there….One thing about it, it got ’em out of a mess here to a good place….It was the only thing we had to do with ’emhell, we couldn’t do anything else with ’em.” R.D. Turman Seals Up Juvenile Records ‘CORSICANA, AUSTIN James Turman, director of the Texas Youth Council, set a policy sealing off from limited press perusal commitment and social case work files on youths in state custody as an offshoot of the Observer’s inquiry into the Gatesville interracial dancing case. During the Observer’s study of the Gatesville State School for Boys earlier this year, case records of various delinquents were studied and abstracted for publication. By agreement no names were used. Assuming the same arrangement would obtain with respect to the two girls in the Gatesville case, an Observer reporter journeyed to the Corsicana State Home, where they are living now. J. W. Irwin, acting superintendent at the home, agreed to arrange an interview with the girls and let the Observer see their files, with their identities protected. But he telephoned Turman overnight, and Turman ruled no on both counts. Discussing the matter with Turman by phone, the Observer was told by the director of the state’s program for delinquent and neg