Jesse Junior Sweats Under Suspicion

JJFamily

W.W. Lowe, the Santa Fe switchman, had confessed all! Jesse James Junior, son of the legendary bandit, was part of a gang which had robbed the Missouri Pacific train near Kansas City on September 23, 1898, said Lowe. “It looks darker for Jesse James,” reported the Kansas City Journal newspaper of October 14, 1898. (“Lowes Story”, pages 1 & 2)

A reporter for the Kansas City newspaper managed to get a moment with the carefully guarded Lowe. “His face is weak,” noticed the reporter. “It is very weak. A receding chin and colorless eyes make him unprepossessing. He carries his head forward and bent over his breast. He has a ‘hang dog’ look.”

“Who, who are you?” Lowe stuttered at the reporter. “What do you want? I can’t answer any questions,” pleaded Lowe as he glanced about helplessly for a way to escape. “They would kill me if I talked to anyone.”

Then one of the detectives entered the room, saw what was happening, seized Lowe by the arm and hurried him away.

Lowe was said to have been implicated also in the holdup of the Chicago & Alton train at the “Blue cut” on December 23, 1896. Involved in that robbery was thought to have been a man named John Kennedy. This John Kennedy had not been part of the later Kansas City train robbery, confessed Lowe, but had advised others that Jesse Junior would be a good man to have along on the job. “The robbery had been planned for weeks before it had happened, and Lowe said that the meetings had been held sometimes at his home and others at the home of Jesse James. He also said that the relatives of Jesse, his mother and grandmother [Zee and Zerelda], knew what was going on.”

Despite things looking bad for “James Gang II”, Andy Ryan, alleged member of the gang, was playing it cool. “He rests easily in his cell in the jail. He smokes. He smiles. He seems perfectly satisfied with the condition of affairs.”

Meanwhile, in the corridors outside the grand jury room, there was an “air of mystery.” Unidentified persons kept slipping in and out of the room where the grand jury was looking into things. “Detectives sat around and amused themselves by telling stories. Chief Hayes would appear periodically. Inspector Jack Halpin was on the scene nearly all the time. The Pinkertons were there. They wore wise looks and said nothing.”

“A bag was slipped into the grand jury room. It was a large bag, stuffed full of something. When it appeared the sleuths glanced knowingly at each other. Detective Joe Keshlear stroked his shin.”

Chief Hayes seemed confident of his case. “I am sorry for Jesse James,” he admitted. “It is a stigma that he will never be able to erase from his name. He is but a boy, and has, I understand, been a good one. But I am just as certain that he is guilty as I am that my name is John Hayes.”

About ersjdamoo

Editor of Conspiracy Nation, later renamed Melchizedek Communique. Close associate of the late Sherman H. Skolnick. Jack of all trades, master of none. Sagittarius, with Sagittarius rising. I'm not a bum, I'm a philosopher.
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