Thursday, September 8, 2016

June 10, 1915: Joe Strando

Today we learn about a lynching in Illinois through the pages of the Belvidere Daily Republican (Belvidere, Illinois) dated June 11, 1915:


Governor Dunne Calls Out Three Companies of Militia to Quell Rioters.


Sheriff of Johnston City Appeals for Aid After Assassination of Wealthy Farmer and Wounding of His Daughter.

Johnston City, Ill., June 11.—Three hundred citizens of Johnston City battered down the steel doors of the jail here and dragged Joe Strando, a Sicilian, from a cell. They rushed him through the streets to an old coal shed near the Illinois Central tracks, threw a noose around his neck, tossed the end of a rope over a rafter and strung him up.

When Strando's feet were well off the floor he was asked to confess his part in the murder of Edward Chapman, one of the wealthiest citizens of the county.

At this juncture a party of foreigners rushed up, protesting that Strando was innocent. Their leader was beaten nearly to death before he escaped.

Confesses to Murder.

Strando was let down and allowed a few seconds to recover his breath. He confessed having plotted the murder with Joe Bingo, a fellow countryman.

Now fully satisfied of the man's guilt the mob again pulled the Sicilian into the air. This time they tied the end of the rope and watched him die.

His body dangled there for hours in full view of passing passenger trains.

Last night a mob of armed Sicilians awaiting re-enforcements from White Ash and Herrin gathered to avenge the lynching of their fellow country-man. An equally large mob of citizens awaits their move.

Three companies of militia have been ordered here from Shelbyville, Benton and Cairo. It is feared that a clash will occur before they arrive.

Wealthy Farmer Assassinated.

Edward Chapman, wealthy retired farmer, was assassinated and his daughter, Mrs. J. L. Schull, twenty-two years old, was seriously wounded in their home near here a few minutes after midnight. Chapman was shot twice through the head and his daughter was shot in the shoulder.

Several Injured During Rioting.

Adjutant General Dixon of the Illinois National Guard left Cairo on a special train for Johnston City, Ill., where state troops have been ordered to quell a riot.


(Special By United Press.)

Springfield, Ill., June 11.—Adjutant General Dickinson received a telegram from Sheriff Harris, of Williamson county that conditions at Johnson City are normal today following yesterday's lynching.

Another article named him Stranzo. I could not find anything on Bingo being lynched, but another article did mention him as being arrested in Marion. 

Our last article comes to us from The Des Moines Register (Des Moines, Iowa) dated February 12, 1921:


Man Confesses to Crime for Which Another Died. 

(By The Associated Press.)

MARION, Ill., Feb 11.—The story of how an innocent man went to his death at the hands of a mob, for another man's crime, came to life after Settino de Santis, an Italian miner, was hanged today for the murder of Amel Calcatterra and Tony Hemphill, two boys.

Befoe he was led to the gallows, De Santis confessed to the murder of Edward Chapman, in Johnson City, Ill., six years ago, for which crime another Italian, Joe Bingo, was lynched on the public square at Johnson City by a mob at the time.

Bingo, De Santis and another Italian, Frank Bianco, had been working together in a coal mine at Johnson City and were discharged by Ben Schull, the mine foreman.

Several nights later, a bullet crashed through a window at the Schull home. It missed Schull but killed Chapman. De Santis and Bianco disappeared the night Bingo was caught by a mob and lynched.

Thank you for joining me and as always, I hope I leave you with something to ponder.

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