July 25, 1899: “Newsboys Riot in Mount Vernon”

Newsboys Riot in Mount Vernon.

Men Who Antagonize Them Beaten With Clubs—Police Needed to Restore Order

The strike of the newsboys against the evening editions of “The World” and “The Journal” reached Mount Vernon yesterday, and has proved to be as effective as in New-York City. About two hundred boys armed with baseball bats and clubs, assembled early in the morning at the railroad station, and succeeded in destroying nearly all of the papers which were received on the trains. The agents, when not protected by the police, were chased by the mob and beaten with clubs until they either discarded or surrendered their bundles.

The Loevine brothers, local agents for “The World,” according to the boys, broke their agreement by attempting to dispose of several thousand extras which they received on an afternoon train. The wagon containing the papers was left standing in Stevens-ave. the strikers tied the wheels together, and when the Loevines returned a hundred boys immediately surrounded them, and, dragging them out on the sidewalk, beat and kicked them until they were covered with blood and bruises. Leaving them lying in the gutter, they attacked the wagon and almost demolished it. The papers were torn into shreds and the frightened horse ran down the street, followed by a shower of stones.

A crowd of a thousand people was soon gathered about the prostrate newsdealers, and the affair would have undoubtedly resulted seriously had it not been for the appearance of the police. The police arrested Thomas Madded on suspicion of having helped to incite the riot. John Charge, sixteen years old, and Walter Gulliver, fourteen, both strikers, were also taken into custody, but released on their promise to apepar [sic] in court.

Last night two hundred strikers, accompanied by about three hundred sympathizers, most of whom were small boys, marched to the home of the Loevine brothers, in Prospect-ave., with the intention of searching the house and publicly burning any copies of the paper that might be found in their possession. The Loevines defended themselves with baseball bats until the police arrived and dispersed the mob. In the charge of the police Stephen Carroll, twelve years old, was struck on the head with a nightstick and received an ugly wound. Chief of Police Foley has been inclined to deal leniently with the boys, but in view of the rioting and disorder to-day he is likely to adopt sterner measures in the future.

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