This ran in Chicago’s Day Book on January 17, 1916. Fine work there officers!


Police Official Suspicious of “Position for Woman” Ad.

Another proof that (Chicago) Daily News want ads are fine tools in crooked hands is contained in a story that broke in the morals court today.

Captain Meagher looked through the Daily News ads one day last week as he sat in his station at 2138 N. California av. He noticed one that didn’t look quite right to him. This ad called for a housekeeper. An easy job was open with good wages, it said. Applicants could call “Albany4336.”

Meagher told Policewoman Anna Schumann to call the number and answer the ad and she did. She was told to come to 3876 W. Grand Avenue for work.

At this address was a saloon, and Miss Schumann applied to the flat above. She was given such an enthusiastic welcome that she grew suspicious of the place from the start. She chatted with the men and women in the flat and answered their questions readily.

After sometime she says, the purpose of the want ad appeared. She was offered a chance to solicit men in the saloon below, she says. Her board and room would be furnished her and she could have half of what she managed to “get from the men. She could take the men from the saloon to her room upstairs, she says she was told.

Miss Schumann acted as though she thought the proposition a good one and told them she had a friend who would like to come to the place under the same terms. Then she left. Straight to Cap’t Meagher she went with the story and he sent her back, this time with Policewoman Mary Hoover by her side and a squad of detectives following her.

No sooner did the policewomen gain entrance than a squad of detectives knocked at the door of the flat. They were admitted by the women sleuths and the place was raided. Eight men and women were arrested, including the owner of the saloon, Mrs. Mary Becker, and her bar tender, Ulysses Smith. They were sent to the morals court on charge of being inmates of a disorderly house.

Cap’t Meagher is glad he watched the News ads so carefully that night “Just suppose,” he said today, “that a young, innocent girl had seen the ad and had gone there to get work as housekeeper. What would have become of her? If we hadn’t noticed the phone number and decided to investigate there is no way of telling how many women might have been taken into the place on promise of a job.”

Source: The Day Book., January 17, 1916

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