Tag Archives: counterfeiting

Minor State News

Schwartz, W. B. - 1906-06-07After nearly two years’ search to find the man who was making the most dangerous counterfeit half dollar ever manufactured secret service officers arrested William B. Schwartz, a well-known lawyer of Indianapolis, and an hour later he is said to have confessed. The molds at his house were given up, and an electric battery and a spurious half dollar were found at his office. Schwartz once had a fine practice, but neglected it to care for a deranged wife, who is now in an asylum.

“Minor State News,” The Plymouth Tribune (Plymouth, Indiana), 7 June 1906, p. 3, col. 8; digital image, Chronicling America (http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/ : accessed 4 April 2014).

Cline Gives Bond

Schwartz, W. B. - 1906-05-23CLINE GIVES BOND

Clarence D. Cline, of Indianapolis, arrested, Tuesday, by Detective Chauncey Manning, as an accomplice of W. B. Schwartz, arrested on a charge of making and passing counterfeit coin, waived examination before Commissioner Young, Wednesday, and was bound over to the federal grand jury in $500 bond, which was given. The man was released.

“Cline Gives Bond,” The Indianapolis Sun (Indianapolis, Indiana), 23 May 1906, p. 1, col. 3; digital image, Newspaper Archive (http://www.newspaperarchive.com : accessed 4 April 2014).

Driven By Misfortune

Schwartz, W. B. - 1906-05-22 #3DRIVEN BY MISFORTUNE

Indianapolis Lawyer Takes to Making Bogus Coins

Counterfeiter Arrested and Confesses He Did it Because of Poverty.

William B. Schwartz Was Unable to Support HIs Family From His Practice and Started Counterfeiting – – – Carried on the Work for Several Years.

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind., Mary 21 – Unable to support two grown daughters and an insane wife by his profession as a lawyer, William B. Schwartz, a member of the Indianapolis bar, admitted to secret service officials this afternoon that he had been forced to make counterfeit half dollars to add to his income.

Schwartz was arrested in his office by Captain Thomas E. Hails, chief of the secret service department, and Merrill E. Wilson, chief deputy United States marshal. Some of the most perfect imitations of half dollars ever found in Indianapolis were discovered in Schwartz’s office, where he finished his output after making the preliminary molds at his home, 419 Grace street.

There was little difficulty in getting Schwartz to admit his guilt. He has been under surveillance almost a year and it is believed he has been making coin nearly two years. Brass molds were used in manufacturing the rough coins, which were composed generally of babbitt metal. These molds or dies were used in Schwartz’s home and after the rough coins were prepared they were taken to his office and finished in an electric battery. One half dollar being “finished” was found in the battery after Schwartz’s arrest by Detective Manning, acting captain of the city detective department, who had been the first to suspect Schwartz.

Officers who made the arrest do not believe that Schwartz passed any great amount of the “queer” in Indianapolis Ind, that he sold his output to an organized gang.

When arrested Schwartz told a tale of poverty and the struggle for existence he has had for the last few years. He is scarcely forty years old and until a few years ago earned a fair compensation from his practice. His wife’s mind became affected, however, and after spending large sums for medical attention, it was necessary to place her in an asylum.

Left with two daughters to support and his practice rapidly decreasing, Schwartz said he knew not from one day’s end to the other where the next day’s meals were coming from.

“Then it was that I got into this business,” he said in conclusion.

“Driven By Misfortune,” The Fort Wayne Journal (Fort Wayne, Indiana), 22 May 1906, p. 1, col. 1; digital image, Newspaper Archive (http://www.newspaper archive.com : accessed 3 April 2014).

Makes Coin Molds

Schwartz, W. B. - 1906-05-22MAKES COIN MOLDS


Schwartz Put Under $1,000 Bail on Charge of Making Spurious Half Dollars.

William B. Schwartz, the Indianapolis lawyer under arrest for counterfeiting, was given a hearing before United States Commissioner Young, Tuesday, and was committed, in default of $1,000 bail. Schwartz made a complete confession at the hearing and wept as he told how he had been tempted to take to counterfeiting as an easy way of getting money. He said he had made and passed about 100 pieces. About half this number has been taken up by the detectives. He said that when he was absolutely in need of a little money he would get rid of a few of the half dollars and then would not attempt it for some time. He has never had a large law practice and his Income from his business was small. Developments of an interesting nature are looked for. The man was finishing one of the coins by an electric process when arrested. He says he has no confederate outside the city.

The prisoner is strong and healthy. The brass molds with which he made the coins molds he made himself, indicate his mechanical ability. He has two daughters who are said to be supporting themselves. His wife is in an insane asylum. The molds were said to be perfect pieces of workmanship. The authorities regard this one of the best catches made recently.

“Makes Coin Molds,” The Indianapolis Sun (Indianapolis, Indiana), 22 May 1906, p. 8, col. 4; digital image, Newspaper Archive (http://www.newspaperarchive.com : accessed 2 April 2014).