Bill Haywood's Book: The Autobiography of William D. Haywood

By William D. Haywood | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VIII
CRIPPLE CREEK

IN the latter part of July a compressor on the Sun-and-Moon mine at Idaho Springs had been blown up. The destruction had been charged at once to the Western Federation of Miners. A few nights later the homes of eighteen miners were invaded by the sheriff and his deputies. The men were taken to jail in spite of the tears and pleadings of their families. They were not formally arrested, as the sheriff had no warrants. He did not even make a charge against any of them, but the next morning he turned them over to a mob of the Citizens' Protective League, by whom they were roughly treated and escorted out of the town.

This was during the armistice before the second strike in Cripple Creek, and while the Denver smelter men's strike was absorbing some of our attention. A committee of the men from Idaho Springs came directly to headquarters at Denver, while the others followed the gang that had run them out, back to Idaho Springs. I talked over this affair at length with the committee and got John Murphy's advice over the telephone. We decided that the best thing to do would be to appeal to the governor. The committee started off to the capitol building and Murphy came over to the office to see me. He said when he came in that he didn't expect any favorable results from the visit to the governor, and that in his opinion we should immediately apply to Judge Owers of Clear Creek county, who had his offices in Denver, for an injunction against the members of the Citizens' Protective League in Idaho Springs.

It so happened that Governor Peabody told the committee that he could do nothing in the matter, that they should appeal to court. This we promptly proceeded to do. Judge Owers granted an injunction which he made permanent. When criminal complaints were filed by the miners against the members of the Protective League, Judge Owers cited bankers, gamblers, pimps, preachers

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