Holloway Corroborates Mincey’s Affidavit
The Atlanta Georgian
Tuesday, July 15, 1913
RECALLS HE WAS TOLD STORY OF CONLEY
Watchman Remembers of Visit of Witness to Factory on Day of Crime.
Further corroboration of several of the important details in the remarkable affidavit of W.H. Mincey, insurance agent and teacher, who swore he heard Jim Conley confess killing a girl, came Tuesday in a statement by E.F. Holloway, day watchman at the National Pencil Factory.
Holloway substantiated in every particular the story of Mincey’s visit to the factory the Tuesday following the crime and recalled the general trend of the conversation, which was practically as Mincey related it in his signed statement published exclusively in The Georgian Monday. The defense has obtained an affidavit from Holloway as to the circumstances of the day.
“I remember Mincey coming here Tuesday,” said Holloway. “He was a quiet, retiring fellow, and I guess we scared him out. There were a lot of people in the factory, and the excitement after the murder was at its height. Several detectives were there and there were a score of people bothering the detectives and the factory authorities with their theories on the killing.
Wanted Negroes Arrested.
“This man Mincey came up to me and said he wanted to see Mr. Frank. I told him Mr. Frank was not there, but that I could take care of him. He asked me how many negroes worked in the factory, as I recall it, and I told him seven or eight.
“‘You’d better have everyone of them arrested,’ he replied. ‘I know the one that did it.’
“‘But there weren’t any negroes working in the factory Saturday except the night watchman,’ I told him, and I said that I didn’t see any negroes at all when I left at 11:45 on account of the holiday. I got a little sore at him because he kept pestering me about the negroes, and I guess he got mad because I wouldn’t pay any attention to him.
“Finally, Herbert Schiff or somebody else turned to the crowd and told them they all would have to leave the building, as it wasn’t possible to make any progress in the investigation with them scattered all over every floor and in the basement. This man Mincey went out with them, and that was the last I thought about his story until the day I found Jim Conley washing his shirt in the factory, something he never did before, so far as I know.
Told of Seeing Conley.
“After this Conley was arrested and I was pretty positive that he killed the girl, although I didn’t have any means of knowing that he even was in the factory until he confessed it of his own accord after he denied it half a dozen times. Then I told some of the people connected with the factory about Mincey, and when I saw him next he told all about the reasons that he felt positive about Conley.
“He said that he had met Conley the afternoon that Mary Phagan was murdered and that Conley had boasted that he had killed a girl. Mincey said he met him somewhere over near where Conley lived. I don’t know whether it was at Electric and Carter streets or not. He said he didn’t think much of it at the time, as he had supposed that Conley in his drunken stupor was merely bragging about his part in some negro row. He told me that Conley had threatened him, saying:
“‘I killed a girl already to-day; I don’t want to kill nobody else.’
“After this I guess they got his affidavit.”