Ogden (Utah). Police Department Joseph Henry Martin investigative files
Dates: ca. 1911-1913.
These records are housed in the Utah State Archives' permanent storage room.
The State Archives had contact prints made from the glass negatives in 2012. These print should be used for research access in order to protect the fragile original negatives.
Scope and Content
This series contains 25 - 11" x 14" glass plate negative images of documents used in a police investigation of Joseph Henry Martin on suspicion of assault, robbery, and extortion. The documents include letters that reveal attempts by a criminal ring to extort money from various Ogden residents, including George W. Culver, Mrs. Ralph Bristol, Mrs. McClaren Boyle, Mrs. Thomas D. Dee, and Mrs. David Eccles. The anonymous letters are signed using the name of Jim Pender, a detective with the Ogden City Police Department, and the name "The Tall and Short Man". Along with these letters are several documents known to be in the handwriting of Joseph Henry Martin, including some writing samples apparently done at the request of the police on police department letterhead. Several of the negatives show the known or "standard" handwriting side-by-side with "disputed" writing from the extortion letters. Each page of the documents was numbered before being photographed. Some of the documents in the series are only partial and many numbers in the document sequence are missing. Some negatives also have stickers with numbers on them that don't correspond with the document numbers. The other negatives may have had numbered stickers on them, but the stickers have fallen off over time.
Joseph Henry Martin was tried in the 2nd District Court for Weber County for assault with a deadly weapon, after David Edwards, a Pinkerton detective working on the case, was shot in an encounter with the extortion ring. Martin was convicted in 1914 and sentenced to the Utah State Prison for five years. He was subsequently tried in the same court and convicted in 1915 on charges of robbery and given a life sentence. Two pages of the extortion letters are marked as court exhibits, but many of the documents in this series were likely used in both trials. Exhibits S-1 through S-12, along with exhibits 8 through 13, 22, 23, 35, 37, 38, and others were introduced as exhibits in the robbery case (see Series 1485, Motion and order files, case 2928). Handwriting experts were brought in from out of state to testify in both cases. In the assault case the judge subpoenaed specific documents found in this series (see Series 6954, Criminal case files, case 861). A newspaper account of the first trial states that the handwriting expert had made photographic copies of the handwriting examples (Deseret News, 24 Mar. 1914) and another newspaper report notes that during the second trial photographic copies of the documents were given to the attorneys and the jury for examination (Deseret News, 30 Nov. 1915). A label is visible on some of the negatives with the name "Albert S. Osborn, New York, Examiner and Photographer of Questioned Documents". The negatives in this series were presumably used to make the photographic copies mentioned in the newspapers.
Numerically by document number.
Motion and order files from the Supreme Court, Series 1485, contain records from J. H. Martin's appeal of his robbery conviction and include excerpts of the transcript from the robbery trial in the 2nd District Court for Weber Co.
Criminal case files from the District Court (Second District : Weber County), Series 6954, contain case files associated with charges brought against Joseph Henry Martin, including charges of assault (case 861), robbery, (cases 890, 891, and 892), and unlawful use of nitroglycerin (case 893).
Inmate identification photographs from the Department of Corrections. State Prison, Series 10396, contain an original prison photo of inmate no. 3073, John Henry Martin (a.k.a. Joseph Henry Martin).
Criminal registers of action from the District Court (Second District : Weber County), Series 26958, provide information about the various charges brought against J. H. Martin, including case numbers 861 and 890 through 893.
Prison commitment registers from the Department of Corrections. Inmate Services, Series 80388, include an entry for inmate no. 3073, John Henry Martin (a.k.a. Joseph Henry Martin), with a photo, physical description, and information about his incarceration at the State Prison.
This series is classified as Public.
Cite the Utah State Archives and Records Service, the creating agency name, the series title, and the series number.
Gaps in Series
The fact that some of the documents in this series are incomplete and some numbers in the numbering sequence on the documents are missing suggests that some negatives may have been destroyed or lost over time.
This series was archivally processed by Alan Barnett in January 2013.
|1||1||Contact prints 1-10|
|1||2||Contact prints 11-18|
|1||3||Contact prints 19-25|
|2||1||1||Document 1, Letter to Boyle, 30 Oct. 1911, p.1|
|2||2||Document 2, Letter to Boyle, 30 Oct. 1911, p.2 (fragment 1 of 2)|
|2||3||Document 2, Letter to Boyle, 30 Oct. 1911, p.2 (fragment 2 of 2)|
|2||4||Documents 3 and 4, Letter to George W. Culver, 20 Dec. 1911|
|2||5||6||Document 8, Letter to unknown recipient, unknown date|
|2||6||7||Documents 9 and 10, Letter to Mrs. Boyle, 28 Dec. 1911|
|2||7||8||Documents 11 and 12, Letter to George W. Culver, 31 Dec. 1911|
|2||8||Documents 13 and 14, Letter to Mrs. Thomas D. Dee, 31 Mar. 1913|
|2||9||12||Document 22, Letter to Mrs. David Eccles, 15 Sep. 1913, p.1|
|2||10||13||Document 23, Letter to Mrs. David Eccles, 15 Sep. 1913, p.2|
|2||11||28||Document 23 (back), Letter to Mrs. David Eccles, 15 Sep. 1913, p.3|
|3||1||Letter segments 1, 3, 4, 5, and 7|
|3||2||Letter segments 10, 11, and 15|
|3||3||Document S-1, Letter to B. A. Campbell, 2 Nov. 1909|
|3||4||Document S-2, Letter to A. B. Canfield, 30 June 1910 (fragment 1 of 3)|
|3||5||Document S-2, Letter to A. B. Canfield, 30 June 1910 (fragment 2 of 3)|
|3||6||Document S-2, Letter to A. B. Canfield, 30 June 1910 (fragment 3 of 3)|
|3||7||Documents S-3, S-4, S-5-6, and S-7, Fire loss inventory (fragment 1 of 2)|
|3||8||Documents S-3, S-4, S-5-6, and S-7, Fire loss inventory (fragment 2 of 2)|
|3||9||19||Documents S-3 and S-4, Fire loss inventory|
|3||10||_8||Documents S-3, S-4, S-5-6, and S-7, Fire loss inventory|
|3||11||Documents S-7 and S-8, Fire loss inventory|
|4||1||Documents S-8, S-9, and S-10, Fire loss inventory|
|4||2||Documents S-9 and S-10, Fire loss inventory (fragment 1 of 4)|
|4||3||Documents S-9 and S-10, Fire loss inventory (fragment 2 of 4)|
|4||4||Documents S-9 and S-10, Fire loss inventory (fragment 3 of 4)|
|4||5||Documents S-9 and S-10, Fire loss inventory (fragment 4 of 4)|
|4||6||24||Document S-11, Handwriting sample for Ogden Police (fragment 1 of 2)|
|4||7||24||Document S-11, Handwriting sample for Ogden Police (fragment 2 of 2)|
|4||8||Document S-12, Handwriting sample for Ogden Police|
|4||9||Handwriting comparison |
|4||10||Handwriting comparison  (fragment 1 of 2)|
|4||11||Handwriting comparison  (fragment 2 of 2)|
|4||12||Handwriting comparison |
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