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Jim Kershner’s This day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

The murder trial of Joseph Bacilon, an Italian immigrant accused of murdering a fellow Italian laborer near Cannon Hill, featured several dramatic moments.

At one point, Bacilon leaped from his chair and cried that his “heart was innocent.”

“I do nothing,” he was quoted as saying. “I suffer.”

Then, another sensation ensued when the court ordered nine Italian spectators searched for firearms. The prisoner claimed he was in fear for his life because of threats of revenge.

Meanwhile, another Italian laborer, a witness for the prosecution, was arrested for mysterious reasons after a conference between the accused man and attorneys for both sides.

Bacilon (whose name was sometimes spelled Bacile) was eventually acquitted.

From the obituary beat: A Pullman fiddler and “itinerant clock repairer” died in his shack, the victim of a night of alcoholic revelry.

Two friends were with him, drinking and playing jigs on the fiddle, when the man collapsed and dropped to the floor.

The other two men “sought to restore the old man to consciousness with music,” but failed.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1783: George Washington resigned as commander in chief of the Continental Army and retired to his home at Mount Vernon, Va.

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