All Thaddeus S. Fancher wanted to do was have a drink.
Maybe the 36-year-old lawyer from Crown Point, Indiana just wanted to have a good time. Or maybe he had a long day and wanted to unwind with a drink or two. The problem was that it was 1924, and, technically speaking, just having a beer or two was illegal.
For decades, there had been individuals across the country who believed that alcohol of any kind was responsible for various evils; anything from promiscuous sexual activity to murder, and everything in between. “Demon Rum,” as they called it, was rotting the moral fiber of the nation. They formed what became known as the temperance movement, and they were determined to put a stop to the evils of liquor.
The problem was that alcohol wasn’t causing everyone in the country to drive home and murder their families. Most people were more than content to just have a drink or two at a social outing, or maybe at home after work. For the most part, they were good, hard-working people who loved their families.
The two groups clashed verbally, legally, and even physically for decades, until, finally, in 1919, the temperance people seemed to have finally won. In 1920, the 18th Amendment went into effect, prohibiting the transport, sale, or manufacturing of any and all “intoxicating liquors” in the United States.
Legally, the consumption of alcohol wasn’t in and of itself illegal. By cutting off all of the conventional methods to get the product to the buyer, the 18th Amendment seemed to have stopped people drinking. Beer companies couldn’t make the product that they had made their fortunes off of, and stores couldn’t sell it.
But the demand was still there. There were tens of thousands of people in the United States that wanted their beer, and they were adamantly opposed to prohibition.
All across the country, a thriving illegal trade in alcohol began almost as soon as prohibition went into effect. Some made their money from making it, which became known as bootlegging. They specialized in selling it to businesses who sold it to their clientele illegally. These places became generally known as speakeasys.
To make a bigger profit, the speakeasies and saloons would sell their liquor at much higher prices than they had before prohibition. But the people didn’t’ care. They were more than happy to pay the cost. Both the bootleggers and the speakeasys reaped huge cash rewards from the illegal booze trade, and it soon became one of the most lucrative illegal trades throughout the 1920’s.
Thad Fancher had grown up in Crown Point, and if he had needed a drink, he more than likely knew where he could go. To be fair, he might not have actually had a beer. Several former bars, saloons, and taverns had obeyed the law and had changed what they sold.
Many of these establishments turned themselves into ice cream parlors, where they sold ice cream and soft drinks to their clientele. Others chose to sell what was known as near beer, which was beer with an alcohol content so low that it was still legal to sell.
On the night of May 4, 1924, Fancher stopped at a bar outside of town called the Half Way House. He quickly settled in, ready to relax for the evening and have a good time. They laughed, they talked; they might have had an illegal alcoholic beverage or two.
Around midnight, a few of the patrons noticed a car pull up outside but didn’t really pay too much attention. The next moment, a group of men and one woman came rushing into the building, the men holding pistols. They began shouting at the patrons, telling them to put up their hands and line up against the wall.
As soon as they did, the robbers began to go through their pockets, taking their money and valuables. Several of them were pistol-whipped repeatedly, and if they fell, they were repeatedly kicked and stomped. Thad Fancher received the worst treatment.
Witnesses later claimed that the robbers had beaten Fancher so badly that he begged for mercy. An intelligent man, he quickly realized that they weren’t going to show him any. With that, he began to yell back at them.
The other victims hissed at him to stay quiet, but he didn’t listen, and the gunmen didn’t like it.
Later sources vary on what exactly happened. Newspapers of the time stated that Fancher was shot in the chest, just above the heart. They went on to say that he would die a short time later in a hospital. Later historians claim that Fancher was shot through the head and was killed instantly.
Either way, Thaddeus Fancher had been fatally injured, and would die from his wounds. Another man, Frank Cochran, had made a move to help Fancher when he fell and was shot in the ankle for his trouble.
When the robbers were finished taking everything that they could, they took the time to set the building on fire, then left. It was later thought that they wanted to burn everyone to death to get rid of any witnesses. They got back in their car, driving away quickly. The Half Way House patrons got everyone out, then rendered what aid they could to the injured.
About a mile and half away, the man driving the get-away car lost control and put the car in the ditch. Little the worse for wear, they climbed out and began to wait.
A short time later, a local man named Carl Layton was driving by when he saw the wrecked car. He got out with his flashlight to help, but the robbers held him at gunpoint and made him get back in the car. Layton was told to take them to nearby Chicago.
Instead, he drove them straight to the Lake County Courthouse. Layton had no intention of taking them to Chicago, but he knew he couldn’t stop them himself. Policeman were in the area, and the robbers knew that Layton had gotten the better of them. They jumped out of the car, each trying their very best to escape.
Two of the men and the woman were captured a short time later. The men gave their names as Alec McCabe and John O’Reilly, while the woman identified herself as Kate Murphy. Her name was later discovered to be Anna Fulke. The other two men had gotten away.
While police had three of the robbers, they very much wanted the others who had managed to escape. Before long, they had a name: Frank McErlane.
McErlane had been a criminal from an early age. In 1913, he was convicted of running a car theft ring. After spending three years in prison, he received parole in 1916. McErlane had only been out a few months before he was involved in the murder of an Oak Park, Illinois, police officer named Herman Mallow.
Lloyd Bopp, also a known criminal, was arrested and indicted for the actual murder of Mallow. McErlane was arrested as an accessory to the crime and was soon convicted and sent back to prison for a year. As soon as he was released in 1917, he returned to his criminal lifestyle.
That same year, Bopp finally stood trial for the Mallow killing. One of the chief witnesses against him was an 18-year-old woman named Grace Lytle.
On November 16, 1917, three men kidnapped Lytle and drove her to East 116th St. and Torrence Avenue in Chicago. Stopping the car, one of the men beat her repeatedly on the head with a hammer. They then pushed her out of the car and drove away, leaving her for dead.
Amazingly, she survived the attack and was able to identify her three attackers, one of whom was McErlane. While the other two were soon arrested, McErlane had already left town.
Almost seven months later, C.S. Vose, a Los Angeles detective, was called to the residence of a man on a completely unrelated charge. It turned out the individual was Frank McErlane, who saw the detective coming and ran. Vose gave chase, and after an intense fight, finally got the upper hand and arrested McErlane.
After a moment, Vose recognized McErlane as a man wanted in Chicago. McErlane freely admitted who he was and was extradited back to Cook County Jail. There he was reunited with Lloyd Bopp, who had since been convicted of the murder of Herman Mallow and sentenced to death.
Almost right away, the men began to plan their escape.
On September 12, 1918, McErlane began to shout for help from his cell. It was the dinner hour, and the only guard on the floor at the time was John Kempter. Kempter would later say that he heard the yelling and ran to see what was happening.
McErlane’s cellmate, Arthur Regan, was lying on the floor of their cell, choking and gasping for air. McErlane seemed like he was in a panic. He told the officer to come over and help him because it looked like Regan was about to die.
The guard, not thinking, rushed to the cell door and unlocked it. Going inside, he knelt over the prone Regan to try and help him. Unfortunately for him, McErlane was waiting.
The criminal struck him hard, knocking him out. Grabbing Klempter’s keys, he ran to the nearby cell of Joe Moran, another of his co-conspirators. Releasing him, the two men then carried Klempter to an empty cell and locked him inside.
They then went and released two more of their accomplices, Lloyd Bopp and Earl Dear. Now that they were together, it was time to escape. Quickly, the four men made their way to a predetermined window.
Prison officials later theorized that one of the trusty’s must have helped them. The iron bars on the window, each over an inch thick, had been sawed almost all the way through. Because of this, the escapees were able to break the bars loose and bend them out of their way.
Just outside the window, heavy grates made from iron and padlocked shut further prevented their exit. The same person who had cut the bars for them had also cut the lock open at some point, and then fastened it back together using soap.
Wrenching the lock off, the men opened the grates and lowered their rope outside. One by one, they made their way down to the outside of the jail walls.
Bopp and Dear went to a car waiting for them on the street outside and sped off. The other two ran off into the descending darkness, making a clean get-away.
The escape was soon discovered, and the county sheriff, John E. Traeger, was called to the jail. It didn’t take long for guards to find out who had escaped, as well as Klempter in his cell. A manhunt for the four men was begun across Chicago.
A few days later, Klempter approached authorities and made a confession. He told them that he hadn’t been lured into McErlane’s cell to help Regan. Instead, he had brought Joe Moran to McErlane’s cell because McErlane had asked to have one last visit with him before Moran was taken to prison.
Klempter had complied, leaving the men alone for about an hour. When he had come to collect Moran, the two criminals had attacked him, stolen his keys, and locked him in a cell.
On September 29, Lloyd Bopp and Earl Dear were recaptured. Moran was found a short time later.
At the end of September, McErlane was arrested in Arizona. He had fled Chicago the night of the escape, taking refuge throughout Arizona and New Mexico. He was returned to the Midwest and put back in jail for two years.
When he was released, Prohibition was just starting, and he was eager to make as much money off it as he could.
He partnered with a man named Joe Soltis, and together they started their own gang called the Soltis/McErlane Gang. They immediately started manufacturing and selling beer and liquor in breweries owned by Soltis, selling it to local establishments. Their territory was based out of the Back of the Yards neighborhood on the southwest side of Chicago.
It was during this time that McErlane began to earn a reputation as being perhaps the most brutal and ruthless killer of Prohibition-era Chicago.
In 1923, McErlane killed a man named Jerry O’Connor, a member of the rival O’Donnell Gang, outside Joseph Klepka’s saloon.
O’Connor and several other men from his gang had tried to get several bars supplied by the Soltis/McErlane Gang to buy their beer instead. In one memorable instance, one owner had been beaten almost for death for refusing.
At the end of the night, the O’Donnell men had finished their run and had been eating at Klepka’s establishment. While they did, members of a rival gang came in and confronted the men. While they argued, an associate of McFarlane’s drew a gun and told the men to raise their hands. To show how serious he was, he fired a warning shot into the air.
The assembled criminals scattered as fast as they could, running through both the side and back doors. Jerry O’Connor, however, wasn’t as fast or as lucky. Too slow to get away, the gun men held him at gunpoint, telling him to move through the front door.
As soon as he cleared the doorway, he was shot. Newspapers at the time claimed that he had been shot through the chest with a rifle. Later gangland historians, however, say that the killing was much grislier.
According to them, the killer was none other than Frank McErlane, who had been waiting outside with a sawed-off double-barreled shotgun hidden under his coat. He shot O’Connor at close-range, the blast ripping away half of his skull.
About ten days later, a car pulled up alongside another car containing George Bucher and George Meeghan, two of the men who had escaped at Klepka’s saloon. McEarlane was in the other car, along with a few other associates. They proceeded to shoot Meeghan and Bucher to death before driving off.
A few months later, McErlane would earn another notorious claim to fame by using what became known as the one-way ride, a killing method that would be used time and time again throughout the duration of the Prohibition years.
On December 1, 1923, William Egan and Thomas Keane, were tied up and placed into the backseat of a car. The man in the passenger seat carried a double-barreled shotgun.
As they drove down the road, the gunman suddenly turned and unloaded both barrels into Keane. He then reloaded the gun and shot Keane two more times. Reloading again, he told Egan, “I guess you might as well get yours, too.”
Egan would be shot in both sides, the leg, and the face. When he was finished, the gunman climbed into the back seat and threw Keane out the door while the car was going at a high rate of speed. Egan was next, landing in a ditch as the car sped off into the night.
Almost unbelievably, Egan survived, managing to walk to a nearby farmhouse in spite of his wounds.
Egan told police everything that had happened. When shown mugshots, he was able to identify the driver as William Channell, a convicted murderer. The other man was later identified as McErlane by a separate witness.
However, when McErlane was indicted for the murder of Thomas Keane, both witnesses suddenly recanted their stories. It was clear that they didn’t want to cross McErlane.
By the time McErlane was wanted in connection with Thad Fancher’s death in 1924, he had built up a reputation for being a feared and competent killer. He continued to build that reputation and run his business as his fellow armed robbers were indicted for the lawyer’s murder in Indiana. John O’Reilly was set to go on trial first.
O’Reilly’s trial began at the end of October of 1924. Patrons of the Half Way House who were there on the night of May 4th described the robbery in detail, including the beatings they received and the shootings of Cochran and Fancher.
Two of them, Marvel McCambridge and Melvin Prevo, told the police how they had been receiving messages not to testify against O’Reilly. Instead of cowing, they boldly took the stand and gave some of the most damning testimony of the trial.
On November 11, 1924, the jury found John O’Reilly guilty and sentenced him to life imprisonment. When he heard the verdict, he feinted as his wife began to scream. She screamed at O’Reilly’s defense lawyers, calling them names.
A few weeks later, Alec McCabe began his trial.
The first witness called was Frank Cochran, the man who had been shot in the ankle at the Halfway House. He had also testified at O’Reilly’s trial, and once again gave a detailed account of what had happened that night.
According to Cochran, John O’Reilly had shot him through the ankle, and Alec McCabe had shot Thad Fancher. His testimony was questioned when he described the killer as being about 5’4” tall and nearly 200 pounds. However, McCabe was around 6 feet tall and almost fifty pounds heavier than that.
Regardless of Cochran’s testimony, the jury couldn’t decide if McCabe was guilty or not. The result was a hung jury, and the judge ordered a re-trial. It began in March of 1925.
Once again, several witnesses were called to give their testimony regarding the events at the Halfway House robbery. Once again, Alec McCabe was said to be Thad Fancher’s killer. This time, the defense called McCabe himself to the witness stand.
According to his story, he had joined O’Reilly and McErlane to attend a business deal. Anna Tulke, their female companion, had decided to come with them so that she could personally inspect a piece of real estate that she hoped her husband would invest in.
The dealings didn’t conclude until late into the evening, and all of them had decided to have a few drinks. That led to all of them getting drunk, and McCabe passing out. He claimed that he didn’t remember anything else until John O’Reilly had wrecked the car later that night. He didn’t know anything about the events at the Half Way House or Fancher’s murder.
On March 27, 1925, Alec McCabe was found guilty of second-degree murder and sentenced to life imprisonment.
His lawyers immediately called for a new trial, claiming that four out of the twelve jurors at the trial hadn’t understood what they had been told to do by the court. They hadn’t fully understood what the punishment would be for second-degree murder and thought they had only been sentencing McCabe to a maximum of twenty-one years in prison.
While everyone waited to see if McCabe would be granted a third trial, the charges against Anna Tulke were dropped and she was released. None of the witnesses could identify her as having been at the Half Way House, and there was no other tangible evidence connecting her to the case.
On May 9, 1925, a body was found lying by a Crown Point roadside. It was soon identified as Frank Cochran. His skull had been crushed by repeated blows to the head by some kind of blunt instrument.
Police learned that he had been socializing around town the night he was murdered. A local woman told them that she had seen a large car park in an alley along the route to his home, and he would have had to walk past it to get there.
Authorities theorized that as Cochran passed the car, the killers had forced Cochran inside and beat him to death. They then drove off, throwing the body out about a mile away. Authorities immediately suspected Frank McErlane.
His trial was next in line, and it was quite possible that Cochran might have been able to identify him as one of the gunmen at the Half Way House. Killing him would not only get rid of the prosecution’s star witness against McCabe, but it would also protect McErlane, as well.
At the end of May 1925, McCabe was granted a third trial. It began in early October.
Although Cochran’s testimony was allowed to be read at the trial, the defense was able to produce new witnesses to contradict it. The first was the owner of the Half Way House. She claimed that she had never seen McCabe the night of the murder or at a line-up of potential suspects at the jail later.
The second was John O’Reilly himself. Brought in from Indiana State Prison, he testified that Alec McCabe had nothing to do with the murder of Thad Fancher. However, he steadfastly refused to identify any of his companions on the night of the murder, no matter how much the prosecution tried.
On October 11, McCabe was acquitted of all charges and released, a free man at last. Authorities were sure that Chicago gangsters had everything to do with his release.
Frank Cochran’s brutal murder after several of the other witnesses at the trial had received threats not to testify made all the difference. No one wanted to go against McCabe or anyone else associated with the Chicago underworld if it meant they would meet the same fate. It also made it easier to persuade others to testify the way they wanted them to, as well.
Regardless, the authorities were undaunted in their search to bring Thad Fancher and Frank Cochran’s killers to justice. More than ever, they wanted McErlane, the man who served as a common thread between the two murders.
In early 1925, tensions between McErlane’s gang and one of their rivals had boiled over into open warfare. McErlane himself quickly became the suspect in at least two murders, although police were never able to land a conviction.
On September 25, 1925, Frank McErlane committed the second crime that would forever connect him to Chicago gangland infamy.
A rival gang leader, Spike O’Donnell, was standing outside of a drugstore at 63rd Street and Western Avenue when a car pulled up on the street. Someone shouted, “Hello, Spike!” before the air was filled with dozens of .45 caliber slugs, the sound deafening from the staccato of shots slamming into the drugstore. O’Donnell threw himself to the ground and survived the vicious onslaught.
McErlane had just made history, the first one to use the Thompson Submachine gun in Chicago crime. Originally designed for military use, the weapon was able to fire upwards of 100 rounds in about five seconds. While his attempt on O’Donnell’s life had failed, McFarlane’s weapon made a huge impression on his fellow criminals. They soon adopted the use of the Thompson for their own ends.
In the spring of 1926, McErlane was finally captured by police after a saloon raid in Chicago. In addition to his activities in the city, he was also wanted in Indiana for both his connection to the murder of Thad Fancher and violating Indiana liquor laws.
While the authorities in Indiana wanted him to be extradited there, it took months of legal haranguing between Indiana and Chicago to finally get it done. Finally, in August, he was brought to Crown Point jail to stand trial for his role in Thad Fancher’s murder.
After several weeks of selection problems, a jury was chosen and the trial begun in February of 1927.
The first witness called by the prosecution was John O’Reilly, brought back to the courtroom from Indiana State Prison. He was adamant that McErlane had been present at the Half Way House. Carl Layton, who had picked up the robbers that night after their car went into the ditch, also testified that one of the men he saw that night was McErlane.
The defense, however, produced witnesses stating that McErlane had been in Chicago the night of the murder. Also aiding their case was the fact that certain evidence that might have placed him at the crime scene had since gone missing from police custody.
Marvel McCambridge, who had been such an amazing witness during the O’Reilly trial, claimed to have never seen McErlane at the Halfway House. The defense soon learned that Vincent McErlane, Frank’s brother and another known violent criminal, had given McCambridge a ride to the courthouse that morning.
McErlane was found not guilty of the murder of Thad Fancher on March 3, 1927. While few believed that he was innocent, there was nothing they could do. McErlane was a free man.
Over the next few years, his increased alcoholism led to the already reckless gangster becoming more and more unpredictable. Allegedly he had gotten so bad that he had begun to hallucinate people who weren’t really there.
In 1931, McErlane and his wife were driving somewhere in Chicago. They were both very drunk, and began to argue. When they stopped, McErlane got out of the car, taking a Thompson Submachine Gun with him. Turning, he unloaded it into the car, killing her and her two dogs.
Finally, the other members of the Chicago underworld had enough. They collected what they called a “retirement fund” of several hundred dollars and forced him to leave the city. His antics had become bad for business.
McErlane moved a few hours away to Beardstown, Illinois, where he lived on a lavish houseboat. His drinking continued, and his health began to worsen with it.
In October of 1932, the former gangster developed pneumonia and checked himself into a hospital. While there, he continued to hallucinate. At one point, he was so convinced that imaginary enemies were attacking him that it took four hospital personnel to hold him down. Later, someone reported that he had shouted, “Don’t let them take me for a ride!”
Four days after checking in, Frank McErlane died from complications of pneumonia on October 8, 1932. He was never brought to justice for any of the murders that he was accused of.
Several modern sources place McErlane as the man who killed Thad Fancher. He was almost certainly involved in the kidnapping and murder of Frank Cochran, as well.
Fancher and Cochran were, for the most part, good men. They had only wanted to sit down, have a few drinks, and enjoy their evening. Little did they know that they had chosen the wrong place at the wrong time, and that it would eventually lead to their deaths.
Only one robber, John O’Reilly, was ever convicted in connection to the murder of Thad Fancher. Frank Cochran’s murder remains unsolved to this day. Perhaps their families took solace in the fact that the one man who was implicated for a role in both of their deaths died an insane, broken wreck. Perhaps there is some justice in that for McErlane’s many, many victims.
Two Seized on Girl’s Charge of Attack in Auto. Chicago Tribune, 11/17/1917
Murder Case Kidnaper Held in Los Angeles. Chicago Tribune, 6/16/1918
Dear and 3 Bandits Break Jail. Chicago Tribune, 9/13/1918
Bopp, Near Gallows, to Appeal to Lowden Today. Chicago Tribune, 12/5/1918
City’s ‘Big’ Crime Laid to 11,000 Drug Addicts. Chicago Tribune, 12/7/1918
Guard in Jail Break Talks Self into Cell. Chicago Tribune, 9/15/1918
M’Erlane, Last of Jailbreakers, is Brought Back. Chicago Tribune, 11/3/1918
Crown Point Lawyer Fatally Shot by Bandits. The Times, 5/5/1924
Bandits Shoot Two Who Didn’t Respond. The Huntington Herald, 5/5/1924
Victim of Bandits is Dead. The Times, 5/6/1924
Frank M’Erlane is Sought as Lawyer’s Slayer. Chicago Tribune, 5/6/1924
Roadhouse Bandits Are Captured After Chase. The Star Press, 5/6/1924
Man Shot by Bandits Dies. The Indianapolis Star, 5/7/1924
State News. The Star Press, 5/7/1924
Police Search for Suspected Slayers. Journal and Courier, 5/7/1924
Affairs at the County Capitol. Thaddeus Fancher Funeral, The Times, 5/9/1924
Conroy and McAleer Refuse to Aid Defense. The Times, 5/9/1924
Fancher Slayers are Indicted. The Times, 5/14/1924.
May Seek a Change of Venue. The Times, 5/17/1924
Cedar Lake Killers on Trial Next Week. The Times, 5/27/1924
Murderer Gets Life Sentence. The Indianapolis Star, 11/12/1924
M’Aleer to Prosecute Bandits. The Times, 9/25/1924
Indicted Girl for Murder. The Times, 10/4//1924
Woman Indicted for Shooting Man. The Star Press, 10/5/1924
Case Opens Today at Valparaiso. The Times, 10/13/1924
Sets Aside Venire in Murder Trial: No Women in List. The Star Press, 10/16/1924
Sensation in Murder Case at Valparaiso. The Times, 10/17/1924
Change of Judge Delays Hearing Til October 27. The Times, 10/18/1924
Jury is Expected This Eve. The Times, 10/29/1924
Still Struggle for a Jury. The Times, 10/30/1924
Fancher Murder Case On. The Times, 10/31/1924.
Testimony in Fancher Murder Trial. The Times, 10/31/1924.
Roadhouse Shambles a Witness Says. The Times, 11/1/1924
Identifies Shooting Gunman. The Times, 11/3/1924
Gangsters Branded as Ruthless. The Times, 11/4/1924
Trail of O’Reilly Resumes. The Times, 11/6/1924
O’Reilly is Found Guilty. The Times, 11/12/1924
M’Cabe On Trial Next Week for Killing Fancher. The Times, 11/19/1924
Valpo Court Fans Find Out All About O’Brien. The Times, 11/22/1924
Getting Jury for M’Cabe at Valpo. The Times, 11/25/1924
Cochran Tells of Murder. The Times, 11/29/1924
Jury Disagrees in M’Cabe Trial at Valparaiso. The Times, 12/4/1924
McCabe, Happy but Happy, Awaits Action of the State. The Times, 12/6/1924
Mrs. Anna Tulke Released on Bond. The Times, 1/24/1925
Second Trial of Alex M’Cabe Starts Monday. The Times, 2/4/1925
Bremer Will Handle M’Cabe Case. The Times, 2/6/1925
Valparaiso Speculates on M’Cabe Case. The Times, 2/7/1925
Court Refuses Honor Motion. The Times, 2/26/1925
Rapid Work on State’s Side in McCabe Trial. The Times, 3/25/1925
Murder Case to Jury at Valpo. The Times, 3/27/1925
McCabe Guilty of Second-Degree Murder. The Times, 3/28/1925
New Angle in M’Cabe Case. The Times, 3/28/1925
Convicted in Slaying of Thaddeus Fancher. The Star Press, 3/29/1925.
Miss Anna Tulke Involved. The Times, 4/30/1925
Brutal Gang Slays Murder Witness. The Times, 5/11/1925
Gang Queen Hides from Vengeance. The Times, 5/12/1925
Still Search for Gang Members for Cochran Slaying. The Times, 5/13/1925
M’Cabe Appeal Again Postponed. The Indianapolis Star, 5/15/1925
M’Cabe is Given New Trial. The Times, 5/21/1925
Judge Smith Bans Stewert and O’Brien From His Court. The Times, 5/27/1925
Third Trial for M’Cabe. The Times, 9/24/1925
M’Cabe Trial Starts at Valpo. The Times, 10/6/1925
Dead Man’s Evidence Read In McCabe Trial Yesterday. The Times, 10/7/1925
Road House Proprietress for M’Cabe. The Times, 10/8/1925
Murderer Brought from Pen, Testifies for Alex M’Cabe. The Times, 10/9/1925.
M’Cabe On Witness Stand. The Times, 10/10/1925
McCabe Freed on Third Trial. The Star Press, 10/12/1925
Seize Gunman for Slaying of Indiana Lawyer. The Times, 10/15/1925
M’Erlane Finally Caught. The Indianapolis News, 4/23/1926
Sheriff Will Try to Get M’Erlane for Fancher Killing. The Times, 4/24/1926
M’Erlane Extradition Up to Small. The Times, 4/26/1926
Issues Writ for McErlane. The Times, 4/27/1926
Sheriff Strong Renews Fight. The Times, 4/28/1926
Gangster’s Hearing on Monday. The Times, 4/29/1926
Sheriff Strong Goes to Springfield Monday. The Times, 5/1/1926
Trying to Save McErlane’s Hide. The Times, 5/11/1926
- M’Erlane Fights Trial. The Times, 5/12/1926
Bar Removal of M’Erlane. The Times, 5/25/1926
M’Erlane Threatens Suicide. The Times, 6/10/1926
Judge to See O’Reilley. The Times, 6/14/1926
Link M’Erlane with Gang of Killers. The Times, 8/2/1926
M’Erlane has Case Continued. The Times, 8/7/1926
Famous Gangster in Crown Point Jail. The Times, 8/17/1926
Speedy Trial for M’Erlane. The Times, 8/18/1926
Plain Fare for Gangster. The Times, 8/19/1926
Sheriff Strong Laughs at M’Erlane Yarn. The Times, 8/20/1926
Faces Trial (Photo of Frank McErlane). The Times, 8/23/1926
Notorious Gang Leader Goes on Trial at Valpo. For his Life. The Times, 2/8/1927
Extra! The Times, 2/15/1927
Holmes in Tirade for M’Erlane. The Times, 2/21/1927
M’Erlane Jury is Sworn In. The Times, 2/23/1927
Fixes M’Erlane as Present at Slaying. The Indianapolis Star, 2/24/1927
Sheriff Strong Hard Witness for M’Erlane Defense. The Times, 2/25/1927
State Scores a Point in M’Erlane Case. The Times, 2/26/1927
Hammond Witnesses Testify in M’Erlane Case Saturday. The Times, 2/28/1927
In Michigan and Indiana. The South Bend Tribune, 6/24/1938
‘Thad’ Fancher’s Ghost Stalks County Courthouse. The Times, 10/31/1939
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