Abilene Reporter News (Newspaper) - February 8, 1954, Abilene, Texas
FAIR AND WARMERWi)t Mme ^^eiKirter-Bettiáí mdhbiikg
"WITHOUT OR WITH OFFENSE TO FRIENDS OR FOES WE SKETCH YOUR WORLD EXACTLY AS IT GOES" — Byron
VOL. LXXIII, No. 238
Auociated Press (AP)
ABILENE, TEXAS, TUESDAY MORNING, FEBRUARY 9, 1954—SIXTEEN PAGES IN TWO SECTIONS
PRICE DAILY 5c, SUNDAY 10c
INFERNO CONSUMES DEPARTMENT STORE—A building housing a department store in Zion, 111., is a blazing inferno, silhouetting some of the firemen from surrounding communities that responded when fire swept through the heart of the business district. Equipment from more than 30 nearby communities was used to bring the blaze under control. Damage was estimated at more than a half million dollars.
Lawmaker, 'King of Monte Carlo' Charged in Ship Deal
WASHINGTON, Feb. 8 (.?!—Atty. Gen. Brownell today announced the indictment of former Rep. Joseph E. Casey (D-Mass) and Aristotle S. O n a s s i s, fabulously wealthy “King of Monte Carlo,” along with seven others on charges of conspiring to defraud the government.
The indictment, kept secret since last October, is based on aUega-tions that corporations controlled by Onassis bought U. S. surplus ships after World War II by falsely claiming that the companies were owned by American citizens. The law authorize* such sales only to American citizens.
A congressional investigation in 3951-52 disclosed that Casey and a group of prominent public figures made huge proflts dealing in surplus ships.
Freed on $10,000 Bond The 47-year-old Onassis. whose rags-to-riches career led to a fortune estimated at more than 300 million dollars, voluntarily surrendered in U. S. District Court this morning. He pleaded innocent.
Chief Justice Bolitha Laws released Onassis on $10,000 bond but warned him not to leave the country while charges are pending. Onassis is an Argentine citizen.
He promptly Issued a statement denying the charges as “unfounded, vicious rumors" and said he would be glad to have the issues settled in court “in accordance with the fine traditions of American justice.”
A native of Smyrna, I’urkey, of Greek extraction Onassis is something of an international mystery figure, best known to the public for his million-doUar purchase of the famed Monte Carlo gambling resort on the French Rivera last year. He bought it to use as headquarters for his vast shipping interests.
Owns Biggest Fleet
OnassLs* wealth reputedly stems from his ownership of the world’s largest private fleet—some 91 ships engaged in hauling oil to Europe and in whaling operations.
A federal grand jury returned the eight-count indictment last Oct. 13, but it was kept sealed until Onassis, then out of the country, returned within the jurisdiction of the court. He came back to the United States last week.
The indictment covers a series
of ship-buying deals, all executed during the Truman administra* tion, involving 18 million dollars.
The ships were sold by the old Maritime Commission, which has since been abolished.
Along with the nine individuals, the indictment named six corpo-ration.s as parties to the alleged conspiracy. The eight counts in the Indictment also include charges of false statements to the government—an offense punishable by as much as five years imprisonment and $10,000 fine, or both, on each count.
Other individuals named defendants were:
Joseph H. Rosenbaum and Robert W. Dudley. Washington lawyers. both of whom figured prominently in a sensational 1951 Senate investigation of alleged “influence peddling" In the Recon.struc-tion Finance Corporation. Both were indicted for perjury because of statements they made during the inquiry.
Robert L. Berensen, board chairman of United States Petroleum Carriers, now living in Paris.
School Board Studies Grade Questionnaires
Questionnaires polling parents and teachers of Abilene elementary school students on the present report card system were handed out Monday, Abilene Board of Education members were told at their regular meeting Monday night.
Supt. of Schools A. E. Wells told the board that the Citizen’s Advisory committee had prepared the questionnaires and they were being distributed to the parents and teachers.
The questionnaires handed out Monday will seek opinion of parents and teachers of elementary schools here concerning the S( satisfactory), O (outstanding), and N (needs Improvement) type of grading system used.
The advisory committee will tabulate opinions and make a report to the school board on its find-
The board also heard a report
Reds Threaten Capital of Laos
LUANG PRABANG. Laos. Feb. 8 — Advance columns of the Communist-led Vietmlnh to-day were hammering at the outlying defenses of JAiang Prabang. The French Command warned that the battle for the city, royal seat of Laos, was Imminent.
The French, estimating that the bulk of the rebels were only a few days’ march from the city, said they had completed their major defenses against the expected onslaught.
(Correspondents in Indochina were working under strict French censorship. Some dispatches were cut sharply by the censors.)
Earlier today, the leading rebel columns had been reported within 37H miles of Luang _
Vietminh’s crack Division cutting across northern Indochina toward the Thailand border, is heading toward this city of about 142,000 where Laos aging King Sisavaiig Vong has his royal palace Laos. Viet Nam. and Cambodia are the Indochinese states associated with France in the French Union.
Vletminh was reported continuing its advance In several columns. following the beds of two ¿txg, tlie Uou and the Suong,
which flow into the Mekong River north of Luang Prabang. Some units may have reached the Mekong.
The French estimated the battle for Luang Prabang will open after a brief delay, but Individual officers said they feel the French sUll have several days to prepare against the attack.
The French command said advance rebel units were thrown back yesterday by French and Laotian forces when the Vletminh tried to cross the Suong. Exact location of the crossing attempt was not disclosed, but qualified sources said it probably was near Pak Sent, 37‘i miles northeast of Luang Prabang.
The French Union has completed its major defense preparations around this city. Union forces today still held Muong Sai, about 50 miles noithwest of Luang Prabang. However, most of the union troops have evacuated the Hou and Suong valleys, pulling back toward Luang Prabang and leaving a .scorched earth behind them.
Bad weather yesterday interrupted the airlift hurrying men and supplies from Hanoi to this Red-mtnactd city. )
by Leo Tucker, of the architectual firm of Tucker & Lindberg, that work on the new Anson Jones Elementary School In the North Park Addition is progressing ahead of schedule.
’Tucker estimated that the school would be completed by April 1, a month and 10 days ahead of schedule.
The school board also heard a group from Fair Park School who requested addition of a stage to the school’s cafeteria.
Appearing to request conversion of the Fair Park cafeteria to a cafetorlum were P-TA President H. L. Haskew, R. J. Hawk, 400 Riverside Dr.; Mrs. D. H. Jefferies, 2849 South Sixth St.; and Mrs. W. L. Parsons, 3313 South Sixth St.
'The board told the group they would take their request under advisement but could offer no immediate solution.
Resignation of Mrs. Mary Joe Foster, third grade teacher at Locust Elementary School, was accepted by the panel.
Three new teachers were hired Monday night. They were; Charles L. Baker, 1945 graduate of Abilene Cbrisuan College, to teach the sixth grade at Crockett Elementary School; Mrs. Barbara Evans, to replace Mrs. Foster as third grade teacher at the Locust School; and Mrs. Maggie S. Sloan as a special education teacher for home-bound students.
The panel also approved paying of $25,558.40 in payrolls and bills.
Frantic Search Begins For Teacher Pay Funds
Nicholas Cok kin Is, Charles Augnethaler and Harold O. Becker, all of New York City. George Cok-kinis, reported to be abroad.
The six corporations named are United States Petroleum Carriers, Inc.; Victory Carriers, Inc.; Central American Steamship Agency, Inc.; Sociedad Industrial Marítima Financiera Ariona Panama, S. A.; Sociedad Marítima Mariflores, and Transatlántica Financiera Industrial Panama, S. A.
The indictment marks the first major criminal action stemming from congressional investigations of the disposal of scores of ships the government had on hand at the | end of World War II.
A Senate inquiry committee headed by the late Sen. Hoey (D-NC> conducted the 1951-52 investigation which centered largely around the ship-purchasing operations of former Rep. Casey.
*1116 inquiry brought forth testimony that Casey and his associates in two deals in 1947 and 1948 netted profits of 3V4 million dollars on an investment of $101,000.
German Issue Passed Over By Big Four
BERLIN. Feb. 8 l^—The Big Four Foreign Ministers agreed tonight to sidetrack the deadlocked German reunification question and move on to the Austrian independence treaty “not later” than Friday.
German Hopes Dim
The decision by Russia and the Western pow'ers in their 13th session—first one held under strict diplomatic secrecy — buried German hopes that the East-West split of their country would be healed at Berlin.
A terse four-power communique couched in guarded language gave no other hint of other developments from the four-hour meeting in the West sector Allied Control Authority building.
The communiquqe said the four ministers—accompanied only by three aides each—“discussed matters arising on Item 1 of the agenda.” This was the Soviet bid for a springtime Big Five conference including Red China, and rival Soviet and French resolutions for a world disarmament conference.
But the closing words of the communique brought cheer to 6,-900,000 Austrians who have been waiting 10 years for the big powers to make good their wartime promise of independence for that occupied nation. It said:
“They (the ministers) further discussed also by previous agreement the question of procedure for opening the discussion by the conference of Item 3 (Austrian independence treaty) of the agenda. On this subject, the ministers agreed that discussions on this item would be opened not later than next i'riday.”
Notified by France’s Georges Bi-dault—chairman for today—Austrian Foreign Minister Leopold Flgl immediately obtained an airline reservation to fly from Vienna to Berlin tomorrow.
If there is to be any real easing of cold war tension in Europe, diplomats look for It to come on the Austrian question. The independence treaty has been stalled for years by Soviet reluctance to pull troops out of this little central European republic.
The good news for Austria only confirmed the bad tidings for Germany. By agreeing to detour around their deadend argument on the former reich, the Big Four obviously admitted they had failed on this leading issue of the conference.
‘WHAT ARE YOU IN FOR?’—A pint-sized kitten looks up inquiringly at an incarcerated dog at the Animal Welfare League in Chicago. The canine prisoner seems equally bewildered by the sudden lack of freedom during the roundup of strays in the city’s drive against the spread of rabies.
'Scor-Foce' Sought In Passion Poet's Death
$43 Million Lost By Court's Ruling
AUSTIN. Feb. 8 (/P)—Texas lawmakers started a frantic search for school teacher pay raise money today after the U.S. Supreme Court killed the state’s 43 million dollar gas pipeline tax statute.
They faced an almost certain 30 day taxation battle at a mid-march special session planned to give teachers a $402 a year compromise salary boost.
The Texas tax would “permit a multiple burden on interstate commerce” said Justice Tom Clark, a Texan, who delivered the unanimous decision. , .
Gov. Shivers said he was disappointed, but that the decision was not entirely unexpected. '
Speaker Reuben Senterfitt called for an immediate meeting of legislative technical staff.s to study the entire tax question so it might be approached “intelligently.”
Atty. Gen. Ben Shepperd said if the people and the Legislature want to put a tax on
Boat Crash Kills 16
LISBON, Feb. 8 <iV-Sixteen crewmen perished today when the 227-ton Portuguese fishing trawler, Acor, foundered on rocks off Lisbon. Two men got ashore in the dense fog.
NEW YORK. Feb. 8 (^—A »car-faced drinking companion — a good Samaritan, at least in pose— was sought today in the slaying» of the lurid poet of passion. Maxwell Boclenheim, and his third W'lfe.
The man w’anted for questioning was identified In a 13-state police alarm as Harold Weinberg, 25, a dishwasher who gave the couple a roof a few days ago to spare them sleeping in hallways and subways.
Weinberg, with a police record as a vagrant and a thief, was last seen Saturday night, about the time Bodenheim and his 35-year-old wife, Ruth, were slain.
A fast talker and an apparent ne’er-do-well, Weinberg had rented the dingy $5 a week Third Ave. room where Bodenheim met an end as savage and sensational as the tales that won him fame.
Bodenheim’s sexy realism in
poetry and prose won him acclaim In the 1920’» among tht Bohemian set that flourished and romped through that era. But for the last 20 years, he hud been a gaunt, alcoholic wreck, peddling the ragged shreds of his genius to slake his thirst.
“This is definitely not a robbery murder,” said Chief of Detectives Thomas A. Nielson, as more than 50 detectives were a vsigned to the case.
Nielson theorized it was a crime of passion, but its motive was as obscure as the final chapter in Bodenheim’s weired 58 years of life.
Oil n«wt .............. 5
Sports ............... 4-7
Editorial* .......... 2
Comics ................ 4
Farm ntwt ....... 7
Radio-TV log ........... ®
TALE OF THE LITTLE STREET CAR THAT COULD -- AND DID
LILLE, France, Feb. 8 (iT»)—If you were u streetcar brimming with electric vitality, your big ambition probably would be to bust away from the motorman who’s always jamming on your brakes.
That’s just what happened today to a Lille streetcar which raced six miles through a busy part of town.
The little red streetcar’s trolley somehow came unhooked. The motorman and the conductor got out to replace it. The conductor climbed atop the car and when the trolley touched the electric wire, the streetcar shot away, hurling the conductor off the roof.
Ignoring wailing passengers, the streetcar swung around curves and sailed through busy intersections and then reached the end of the line. There it bounced onto the lavement and crashed into a tailorshop. There was a ittle damage but no one was hurt.
V. ». DEPARTMENT OP COMMERCE WEATHER BCRF.AC ABIIJENE AND VICINITY* — Fair and mild Tufsday and Wadneaday; high both daya 70-75; low Tueaday night 40-45.
NORTH CENTRAL TEXAd - Fair through Wfdneaday; slightly warmer Tuesday.
WEST TEXAS ~ Fair throufh W'ednea-day; not much change in temperature».
EAST AND SOUTH CENTRAL TEXAS — Generally fair through Wedneaday; slightly warmer Tueaday.
34 ......... 1:30 ....... «
34 ............ 7:30 ........... W
36 ............ 3.30 .......... 72
37 ............ « 30 -------- p
37 ........ ... 5:30 ........ 73
39 ............ 6:30 ......... «6
38 ............ 7:30 ............
43 .......... . «30 ............ M
50 ....... .... 1:30 ........... »3
5t ............ 10:30 ......
83 ............ n 30 ..........
66 ........... 13:30 .....
High and low temperature! for *4 hour» ended at 6:30 pm. 73 and 33. High and low tamperaturea asm# dale last year: 70 and ». 8un»at last night 6.1# p m. Sunrise today 7:37 a. m. Suneet tonight 6:30
, ‘’ Barometer reading at 6:30 p m. 3IT7.
I Relativa humltiitj at iJ» p.».
Woman's Death Ruled Suicide
A verdict of “suicide” was returned by Justice of the Peace W. T. St. John Monday night in the death of Mrs. E. J. Fowler, 63, widow of an Abilene policeman found dead with a bullet wound in her right temple Monday morning at her home.
Funeral arrangements were pending Monday night at Elliott’s Funeral Home.
Mrs. Fowler’s husband died about two years ago. He had about 28 years of service on the police force here.
W’hen found shortly before 9:30 a.m. at her home at 1917 Cedar Crest Dr. by Mrs. V. H. Shoultz who had come to take her to work, Mrs. Fowler was dead in bed with a .38 caliber pistol on her chest. Mrs. Fowler, who had been taking care of Mrs. Shoultz’ children, lived alone.
A note asking that various friends and relatives be notified of Mrs. Fowler’s death was found.
Mrs. Fowler was born June 2, 1890. She was married to the late Mr. Fowler in 1921 in Fort Worth.
Survivors are three brothers, Hubert McEntyre, J. B. and F. W., all of Finger, Tenn.; and one sister. Mrs. Zulphia Whitt of San Pablo, CaUf.
First* Negro Juror
PLAINVIEW. Feb. 8 (J’'-Joe Evans. 38, Negro barber in the Negro section of Plainview, today was the first Negro ever to be selected on a jury in Hale County.
natural gas, it could be done in a legal way, “even under to-day’s decision by the court.” Rep. D.H. Buchanan of Ixmgvievv, chairman of the Hou.se Committee on Revenue and Taxation, said he wanted to study the opinion but that many legislators felt “something would have to be done about teachers pay.” All revenue measures must originate in the House. The last legislature refused to pass a tax bill to finance a $600 annual pay raise for teachers.
$43 Million Dacision State officials had hoped the Supreme Court would uphold the contested law taxing transmission of natural gas to consumers in 38 other states. A favorable decision would have furnished about 43 million dollars for use in the current two year fiscal period—more than enough to pay for the $402 a year pay raise worked out as a special session compromise.
The decision left the Legislature with the double-tough duty of facing the hard political issues involved In boosting teachers pay and Increasing taxes. Most lawmakers w-Ul be up for reelection this summer. Gov, Shivers may seek reelection. Senterfitt Is also a prospective candidate for governor.
The tax was levied at ^20th of one per cent per 1,000 cubic feet of gas taken for transmission out of Texas. It has been bringing In about a million dollars a month. All the revenue was tied up while more than 100 suits were being argued in the courts.
2 Cases Considered Two cases went to the Supreme Court, those filed by the Mlchigan-Wisconsin and Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line companies. They contended the law violated the Constitution by being a burden on interstate commerce.
The court agreed. Clark wrote that the net effect of the law “would be substantially to resurrect the customs barriers which the éommerce clause (of the Constitution) was designed to eliminate.” Senterfitt said last month he thought it would be “most difficult” to pass any tax bill except one on long line gas carriers at a 30-day special session. He asked Lieut. Gov. Ben Ramsey today to call the Legislative Council and the Legislative Budget Board into immediate session to work on the tax problem.
Shepperd called the decision “a body blow to our state’s financial structure, but not an unexpected one.”
The attorney general said his staff had done considerable research on the gas tax question, and was ready with several proposals If the Legislature wanted to consider them. He emphasized that they were not being sponsored by his office, but merely being made available for use.
He said the research had established that a production tax on natural gas “is unquestionably valid.”
“The gas production tax can be amended so as to increase the production tax on residue gas.” he said. “Our waste statute could be amended so that it wUI constitute waste for a producer of gas to fall to pass the gas production tax on to the purchaser.”
Texas Nalural Gas Tax Held Void By Court
WASHINGTON. Feb. 8 (m—In an unanimous opinion delivered by Justice Tom Clark, the Supreme Court held today that Texas’ controversial tax on natural gas is invalid.
The tax on natural gas transmitted by pipe line companies to consumers in 38 other states had been attacked by the Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line Co. and the Mlchigan-Wlsconsln Pipe Line Co.
The two firms contended the tax was an unconstitutional burden on the free flow of commerce between the states. They also contended the tax ultimately would be paid by consumers In tht 38 states.
Thus the tax statute enables Texas to achieve the politically popular result of raising revenue at the ultimate expense of citizens of other states,” they argued. Not Interstate "It Is perhaps sufficient that the privilege taxed namely the ta’x-ing of the gas, is not so separate and distinct from interstate transportation as to support the tax.
‘But, additional objection is present if the tax is upheld. It would permit a multiple burden upon that commerce.”
Pipe line companies through last June had paid more than IS million in taxes under protest. More than 100 suits attacking the tax were pending in Texas state courts. The tax is at the rate of 9-20th of one cent for each thousand cubic feet of gas taken for transmission out of Texas.
Hit Police Methods In another case, the court strongly attacked police methods in a California gambling case but refused to retreat from a previous ruling that the Constitution does not bar the use in state courts of evidence obtained illegally.
Five separate opinions, often sharply worded, were filed in the case of Patrick E. Irvine of Long Beach, Calif. The upshot was that by a 5-4 vote Irvine’s conviction on charges of violating the California gambling law stands.
The court decided that it was all right for a state to use the required $50 federal gambling tax stamp as a basis for prosecution under state gambling laws.
Clark Reluctant Justice Jackson said In the court's majority opinion that there was no “substance or merit" to Irvine’s argument that in buying the tax stamp he was barring Long' Beach city police from prosecuting him.
Chief Justice Warren and Justices Reed. Minton and Clark joined Jackson in forming the court’s majority although, Clark said in a separate opinion that he acted with “great reluctance, on the basis of 1949 precedent.”
Hope Cone! Coffee Staying High
A A A% X—IE. AA Ant st tH#
WASHINGTON. Feb. 8 (B-A New York expert told Senate Investigators today there is no hope for a dip In coffee prices as long as the demand stays normal.
I^eon Israel, vice president of the New York Coffee and Sugar Exchange, gave that appraisal to a Senate Banking subcommittee when it opened a pubUc inquiry into price boosts that have pushed coffee beyond a dollar a pound in some grocery stores and 15 cents a cup in many cafes.
The subcommittee didn’t nail down today the reasons why coffee has shot up in recent weeks.
Israel ruled out speculation as a factor but said the fact that Brazil has different rates for exchanging American dollars for Brazilian cnizeirot hai something to do with it.
Both Israel and Gustavo Lobo, president of the Coffee and Sugar Exchange, insiated there is enough coffee now to meet demand and thus “no shortage.” But Israel added that “every bit of coffee in Brazil” may have been put on the market by the time the 1953 crop year ends next July.
The subcommittee chairman. Sen. Bead (R-Md). got out a itate-ment after the hearing saying that “two general misconceptions have apparently been cleared up” by the first day’s testimony.
“StatemenU in the last few weeks have given the impression that there is a shortage of coffee, and that this shortage was created by a severe fnist in Brazil last summer,” he said.
'‘Testimony by witnesses • • •
was to the effect that there is no shortage of coffee at this time, and that the coffee now being consumed was unaffected by the frost of last summer. ’
Sen. Bush (R-Conn> said he thought a uniform exchange rate would cut in half the price at which BnizU sells coffee in the American market. Ho said the existence of varying rates “is probably responsible for 25 to 30 cents in this market.”
“Is that a iair statement?’* he asked Israel.
The differential, Israel said, .'s responsible for “some” of the recent upturn in coffee prices, but;
“i don’t know that you can say it is resiKjnslhle for '¿5 or 30 cents or 10 cents a pound."
Prices have gone up to aa ex
tent that talk of a coffee-drinking boycott has made some headway around the country. And coffee producing nations are worried.
The Colombian ambassador to the United States, Eduardo Zuleta Angel, went to the State Department today to tell Under Secretary Walter Bedell Smith a boycott woukl hurt sales of American products in Latin America.
Zuleta told new'smen coffee sales to the United States enable 14 Latin American countriea to buy about IV* billion dollars worth of goods fi-om this nation every year.
l.atln Americans contend high coffee prices here are chiefly the result of heavy demand combined with frosts that have hurt the coffee crop, particularly in Brazil.
Brazil’s charge d’affaires. Sylvio Eibeiro 4» Carvalho, also l^d an
i appointment at the State Department today to talk coffee with Asst. Secretarj’ John M. Cabot,
Brazil and Colombia rank one-two among the world's coffee producing nations.
Israel started to list what goes into profits on coffee. He aaid a Brazilian exporter gets leas than a cent a pound and a United States jobber “is happy to get one-half of one per cent” of the price of coffee delivered for shipment at Santos, Brazil.
Coffee roasters, wholesalers and retailers cut in on the profit, too he said, but be didn’t lay to w*at extent.
Lobo said he believes the coffee exchange haa a ttabUlziM tfftct on the coffee market, 'rlw subcommittee plans In look inlo opsr-aUom si «tcb'iaM Upamw.