San Francisco (CA) Bulletin, “The Farce of San Quentin,” January 18, 1860

    Source citation
    “The Farce of San Quentin,” San Francisco (CA) Bulletin, January 18, 1860, p. 2: 1.
    Newspaper: Publication
    San Francisco Daily Evening Bulletin
    Newspaper: Headline
    The Farce of San Quentin
    Newspaper: Page(s)
    Newspaper: Column
    Date Certainty
    Don Sailer, Dickinson College
    The following text is presented here in complete form, as it originally appeared in print. Spelling and typographical errors have been preserved as in the original.

    THE FARCE OF SAN QUENTIN. Is there a greater farce than sending a man to the State’s Prison? There is a man Wheelock, sentenced to San Quentin for a twelve-month, yet within three months’ time at liberty in our streets, as large as life – not pardoned out – nor a fugitive, but a trusty! He carries with him a paper, to which he solicits signers – a paper petitioning for his pardon! The jury that found him guilty, and the Judge that sentenced him, must gaze upon the spectacle of a convict at liberty, circulating his own petition for pardon, in unfeigned admiration of the merciful ways of Justice, and the amiable sweetness of law in these [later?] days. Grand Juries have repeatedly presented this defiance of the statute on the part of the prison authorities, by allowing certain trusty inmates to go at large before the expiration of the time of the sentence. It is time to stop the practice. Otherwise abolish the State Prison, and the expensive luxury of convicting culprits who are to range the streets at will and make conviction popular among rogues. Here is an opportunity for legislative intervention which, for the good of the State, should not pass unimproved.

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