March 28, 1909


Compelled to Hold Up Hands Ten
Minutes After Robbers Left.
May Have Been Aided
by a Woman.

One of the most sensational holdups in recent years occurred about 10 o'clock last night when five men robbed the saloon of John Galvin at 1419 West Twenty-fourth street. The twenty or more men in the place all held up by two of the bandits and compelled to remain in the saloon fully ten minutes before they dared to leave. About $160 was secured by the highwaymen.

It was unusually crowded in the saloon last night. A dozen men were lined up at the bar, and Thomas McAuliff, the bartender, was so busy that he had hardly time to visit with the frequenters. But he stopped at his work when a woman began to yell in the back yard.

A moment later she burst into the barroom through the rear entrance and yelled, "Murder!" All eyes were fixed in her direction when two men stepped in behind her. Each had a red handkerchief over his face and each held a revolver.

"Up with your hands," commanded the taller of the two.

A few of the patrons tried to slip through the front door, but they changed their minds when they saw three more men with guns on the outside. In a moment they had all backed up against the wall and were holding their hands as high as possible. In a businesslike manner the short man went down the line and searched the pockets of each of the victims. He was evidently disappointed at the small amount of change that he managed to extract.

"The cash register must have it all," he said.

Maculiff was also standing with his hands in the air and made no objection to the robber's familiarity with the cash register. Not satisfied with the $100 which the register contained, the highwaymen searched the bartender. He secured $60, besides a watch which Maculiff valued at $65.

The woman, on whom all the attention was at first directed, had left the room. It was getting tiresome for the twenty victims who were leaning against the wall and they were more than glad when the operations of the robbers seemed to be about over. But the prospect of freedom was not so good when one of the men said:

"Now, if a single one of you move in the next ten minutes, he gets his head blown off." The two men backed out of the saloon through the front entrance and ran eastward on Twenty-fourth street. They were joined by their companions, though the patrons and the bartender were not aware of the fact. All remained in the same tiresome position for fully ten minutes. When Maculiff got to the door he saw that the coast was clear.

The police at the Southwest boulevard police station were notified and hurried to the scene. A few clews were picked up which made the officers believe that the holdup gang had been in the neighborhood all evening. The part that the woman played in the holdup was still a topic of conversation at closing time at midnight. Several affirmed that she was an accomplice to the robbers, while others said that she was some woman who lived in the neighborhood and had run in the saloon for protection.

The frequenters of the saloon were too excited to talk about the robbery in a coherent manner last night. Henry Beadles, who lives at 2014 Summit street, said he thought that there were only two men in the gang, but Michael Connolly, who lives at 2136 Madison street, said that he saw three others plainly through the door.

John Reed, 2312 Terrace street, was sure that he could recognize the robbers should he ever see them again. One of them had high cheek bones, and limped slightly in walking. All of the victims said that the ten minutes which they spent against the wall after the robbers had left were the longest ten minutes they had ever experienced. About $3 was secured from the men.