TOBACCO WAS SAWDUST. ~ Police Make Discovery After Guarding Supply for a Year.

June 8, 1908

Police Make Discovery After Guard-
ing Supply for a Year.

"This tobacco was found at Missouri avenue and Walnut street night of August 9, 1907, by Fred Myers, 816 Bank street. BAILEY, Desk.

The foregoing was written on a tag which has now for nearly a year been tied to a dozen sacks of smoking tobacco in the possession of Captain Frank F. Snow, property clerk at police headquarters. That is, everybody thought the sacks contained smoking tobacco.

A man at the station had no smoking tobacco. He wanted a pipe full so badly that he tried to borrow one from all hands about the place. All were just out.

"There is to be an 'old hoss' sole of uncalled for and confiscated property pretty soon," an officer suggested. "See Captain Snow and he may fix you out with tobacco."

"Sure," said the good-natured captain. "Here is a lot that I have had for nearly a year. It was found on the street and has never been called for. Take a sack."

The citizen was grateful, and filled his pipe Those who were watching him noted the peculiar color of the tobacco. It was almost pure white. But the citizen did not notice it. He was talking as he stuffed the"weed" into the pipe. Then a burning match was applied to the well-filled pipe. As the citizen "tasted" his tongue and looked curiously at his pipe the fumes of burning wood filled the little room where he sat. Then he reopened his gift sack of tobacco.

"Sawdust, by heck," he exclaimed as all laughed at what they thought of the good joke Captain Snow had played on his friend. The man hurried in to tell the captain that he "bit" all right and that it was a "peach of a joke."

Captain Snow became interested. "Sawdust?" he said. "You are leaking language through your Merry Widow. I'll just show you that you are off."

When the captain examined the sack and was convinced that it was pure, unadulterated sawdust he brought out the other eleven sacks. One by one they were found to contain nothing but sawdust.

"Well, I'll be dinged; say, what do you think of that? Here I have been guarding that alleged tobacco for nearly a year waiting for an owner to put in appearance."

Some eagle-eyed individual then discovered that not a sack had a government stamp on it. Further inspection and this was found plainly printed on the back of each sack: "This package contains sawdust. To be used in window display."