the fearful responsibility of silence, if they will; for one I will not, cannot. I will take the other responsibility of exposure, which responsibility I personally and entirely assume, although the step is taken after conference upon its wisdom with some of the most trusted and active Anarchists in America.
Now, then, the facts. And they are facts, though I state them generally, without names, dates, or details.
The main fact is this: that for nearly two years a large number of the most active members of the German Group of the international Working People's Association in New York City, and of the Social Revolutionary Club, another German organization in that city, have been persistently engaged in getting money by insuring their property for amounts far in excess of the real value thereof, secretly removing everything that they could, setting fire to the premises, swearing to heavy losses, and exacting corresponding sums from the insurance companies. Explosion of kerosene lamps is usually the device which they employ. Some seven or eight fires, at least, of this sort were set in New York and Brooklyn in 1884 by members of the gang, netting the beneficiaries an aggregate profit of thousands of dollars. In 1885 nearly twenty more were set, with equally profitable results. The record for 1886 has reached six already, if not more. The business has been carried on with the most astonishing audacity. One of these men had his premises insured, fired them, and presented his bill of loss to the company within twenty-four hours after getting his policy, and before the agent had reported the policy to the company. The bill was paid, and a few months later the same fellow, under another name, played the game over again, though not quite so speedily. In one of the fires set in 1885 a woman and two children were burned to death. The two guilty parties in this case were members of the Bohemian Group and are now serving life sentences in prison. Another of the fires was started in a six-story tenement house, endangering the lives of hundreds, but fortunately injuring no one but the incendiary. In one case in 1886 the firemen have saved two women whom they found clinging to their bed-posts in a half-suifocated condition. In another a man, woman, and baby lost their lives. Three members of the gang are now in jail awaiting trial for murdering and robbing an old woman in Jersey City. Two others are in jail under heavy bail and awaiting trial for carrying concealed weapons and assaulting an officer. They were walking arsenals, and were found under circumstances which lead to the suspicion that they were about to perpetrate a robbery, if not a murder.