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Senator Walsh of Montana. Wasn't there some one individual who would keep the account?
Mr. MAJOR. There was not, sir.
Senator Walsh of Montana. You do not know, then, in whose hand these particular checks were drawn?
Mr. MAJOR. No, sir.
Senator Walsh of Montana. But they would necessarily be in the hand of Mr. McLean or one of these individuals who drew the checks?
Mr. MAJOR. Yes, sir.
Senator Walsh of Montana. Do you remember ever having seen the books from which the checks were written?
Mr. MAJOR. I do not. I may state, Senator, that in addition to being connected with Mr. McLean in a confidential manner, I am also a writer for the Washington Post.
Senator Walsh of Montana. You spoke of Mr. Duckstien. What place does he hold?
Mr. MAJOR. He is a stenographer-secretary.
"Senator, merely for courtesy and to try to clear up this matter, bank balances for the last six or seven years have been very satisfactory. I have drawn checks myself and not put the amount on the stubs. I do not use the stubs. I get a statement once a month; I do not think I have been overdrawn in the last eight years. I mean, if you would ask me the exact amount I have in the bank I could not tell you-I could not tell you whether it was $110,000 or $115,000, that is, when my funds are around $100,000. I could not say definitely within ten or fifteen thousand dollars whether they were over or under that amount. I kept counter checks on which there were no stubs.”
Senator Walsh. Anyway, you drew these checks yourself, Mr. McLean?
Senator Walsh of Montana. Well, into whose hands were the check books from which these checks were made given?
Mr. McLEAN. I think, Senator, to the best of my recollection, that they were in my hands.
Senator Walsh of Montana. In whose hands at the present time?
Mr. McLEAN. I do not think they would be in anybody's hands, unless I could find them some place. It was late in the year of 1923 before I had an audit system installed.
Senator Walsh of Montana. Well, Mr. McLean, you did have the check books and those check books must be in the custody of someone else in whose custody are they?
Mr. McLEAN. I could not tell, sir.
Senator Walsh of Montana. Well, in the regular course of your business, in whose custody would they be?
Mr. McLEAN. I keep a private check book of my own-a check book of perhaps 50 or 60 checks--that I call my private check book and which I usually destroy when I get through with it. In the evenings when I am at my office at the Post I often make our checks and send in to Poli's or the National or the nearby hotels—for cash. I never keep a record in full for that sort of transaction.
Senator Walsh of Montana. I think that is all, Mr. McLean.
I hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and correct transcript of the proceedings and testimony as recited therein as taken by me in shorthand and by me transcribed. Given under my hand at Palm Beach, Fla., this 11th day of January, 1924.
J. E. FREND.
Senator Walsh of Montana. The testimony having so been taken, Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, I addressed a communication to former Senator Fall, of which the following is a copy [reading]:
I have the honor to advise you that I have just taken the testimony of Edward B. McLean pursuant to the authority and direction of the Committee on Public ands and Surveys of the United States Senate, in the course of which Mr.
McLean stated, in substance, that while he agreed to loan you $100,000, as stated in your letter to the chairman and menbers of the committee of date of December 26, 1923, and gave you his checks, two or three in number, for that amount, and received from you your note for the same sum a few days thereafter, toward the close of the year 1921, you returned to him the checks, which had not passed through the banks or been otherwise cashed and that he thereupon surrendered to you the note referred to, you stating in that connection that you had arranged to secure funds elsewhere.
I shall be glad to take, for the information of the committee, any further statement in respect to the matter you may care to make, either orally, before me at your convenience at any time, or in the shape of a letter to the committee, if you prefer to take that course.
Senator Walsh of Montana. This letter having been written and signed by me, it was inclosed in an envelope addressed to former Senator Fall, which I sealed. I took it to the desk in the office at the hotel, and accosted the gentleman at the desk, whom I assumed to be the manager of the hotel. I asked him if he would not have the kindness to present the letter to Senator Fall. He said, “Senator Fall is not registered here.” I said, "I understand he is not registered here, but I know as well that he is in the hotel, and I very respectfully ask you to hand the letter to him." He said, “Well, I do not want to hand him the letter.". I then said to him, “Now, I do not care to place this in the hands of the sheriff and have him go rummaging through your hotel to find Senator Fall, but Senator Fall must get this letter.” He thereupon said, "Well, I will give this letter to Mr. McLean and let him deliver it to Senator Fall. I said, “That will be satisfactory.”
Shortly thereafter, I should think 15 or 20 minutes, Mr. McLean and his attorney, Mr. Wilton J. Lambert, came to the hotel and told me that Senator Fall desired very much to talk with me but that he was too ill that day to confer with me. I said "Very well, I will see Senator Fall to-morrow morining at 10 o'clock."
They left, and within a short time thereafter, possibly half an hour, came back and handed me this letter from Senator Fall, which they said would take the place of the interview which had theretofore been ari anged.
PALM BEACH, FLA., January 11, 1924. Senator THOMAS F. WALSH,
Breakers Hotel, Palm Beach, Fla. DEAR Sır: I am in receipt of your communication of this date, advising me that after the taking of Mr. McLean's deposition to-day you are ready, under the authority granted you by the committee, to take any statement that I might desire to make or to accept from me any subsequent written statement from me to the committee.
I desire to advise you that I have carefully read the testimony which Mr. McLean gave to-day and that I endorse the accuracy of same. I will also say that before giving his testimony Mr. McLean had a conference with me and I told him that, so far as I was concerned, it was my wish that he answer freely, and, in this connection, I will say that it is absolutely true that-I did not finally use the money from Mr. McLean, which he expressed himself willing to give me, because I found that I could readily obtain it from other sources. I wish it thoroughly understood that the source from which I obtained the money which I used was in no way connected with Mr. Sinclair or in any way involved in any concession regarding the Teapot Dome, or any other oil concession.
Further than this, I would not care to go at the present time, inasmuch as I am not in anything like the physical condition to stand the ordeal of an examination. It may be, though, that I will desire to amplify this statement to you for the committee at a later date. Very truly yours,
ALBERT B. Fall.
Senato. Walsi. Now, Mr. Chairman, as we were on this matter of an explanation of the origin of this fund I recall that Senator Smoot told us here one day that he had had some communication from former Senator Fall on the subject. Perhaps Senator Smoot will give us the letters or telegrams he got from former Senator Fall.
Senator Smoot. The only telegram I got from Senator Fall was the one I read to you on yesterday.
Senator Walsh of Montana. May we have that telegram?
Senator Smoot. I received on yesterday the following telegram from Senator Fall:
I am contemplating no sea voyage until hearings close. Will hold conference parties arriving this evening, and wire you fully not later than Tuesday.
Senator WALSH of Montana. No, Senator Smoot; that is not the matter to which I refer. It occurred quite a while ago, at the time testimony was being taken on the subject. Perhaps Senator Lenroot will recall its being brought up at the time the testimony was adduced concerning the expenditures made by Senator Fall for the purchase of ranch property. Senator Smoot told us, as I understood at that time, that Senator Fall was coming and would explain the matter.
Senator Smoot. That was a telegram to the chairman (Senator Lenroot), was it not?
The CHAIRMAN. No; that was a telegram that was sent in to you, I think, when the matter first came up.
Senator SMOOT. Oh. I read that telegram into the record at the time, when Senator Fall was in New York, I think.
Senator Walsh of Montana. I do not think it was put in the record. Senator Smoot. I can see by referring to the record.
Senator Walsh of Montana. I understood you to say in that connection that Senator Fall had borrowed the money from his son-in-law.
Senator SMOOT. This is the first time I ever heard of that. Senator Walsh of Montana. Senator Ladd, did you hear that? Senator LADD. I do not recall.
The CHAIRMAN. I think Senator Smoot had a letter or a telegram from Senator Fall stating that his son-in-law was coming on here and that he could explain the transaction.
Senator Walsh of Montana. Perhaps that was it. Would you mind getting the telegram, Senator Smoot?
Senator Smoot. I will ask my secretary to get that telegram and let us put it into the record if it is not already in.
Senator Smoot. Shall I read the whole telegram, Senator Walsh ?
Senator Walsh of Montana. Will you just excuse me a moment, Senator.
Senator Smoot. Yes.
THREE RIVERS, N. Mex.,
November 20, 1923-11 p. m. Hon. REED SMOOT,
Senate Office Building, Washington, D. C.: Have just wired International News, Denver, as follows: “Thanks for your wire. Mr. McGee should be an authority on tax paying and finance; however, record evidence Otero County and sixth district court will disclose that dispute arising about my assessment I refused pay, and myself brought suit to adjust proper amount under State law, at same time disposing amount I claimed due, and that after several years decision was rendered my favor and all due taxes paid. Never threatened Mr. McGee at any time, and his complaint against me is, I presume, largely because, despite his abuse for years, I have declined publicly mention his name. You are doubtless aware that a few months since McGee was indicted, tried by jury, and convicted of criminally libeling Chief Justice Parker, this State, and afterwards pardoned by the present governor. I am informed that he is also now under indictment for libel of Ex-Chief Justice C. J. Roberts. A wire from you to Judge Meacham, presiding judge sixth district, or Hon. Mark B. Thompson, Las Cruces, N. Mex., special counsel for State tax commission, will corroborate foregoing as to tax matter.” Clayton, one of Walsh witnesses, knows about tax suit, as does Stalcup Johnson, another witness there, can also testify, as well as other evidence, possibly to be brought out. C. C. Chase now en route, arriving Monday. My son-in-law knows all about ranch deal and my business generally. Of course if necessary will go there personally after Walsh has concluded. I understood Doheny, Robison, and Bain were to testify before Walsh went any further. Think this very important.
A. B. FALL.
Senator WALSH of Montana. Senator, is that the only communication you had with him?
Senator Smoot. That is the only communication. There is one other, of December 3; those are the only ones.
Senator WALSH of Montana. What is the December 3 telegram? Senator Smoot (reading):
THREE RIVERS, N. MEX.,
December 3, 1923—10.20 a. m. Hon. REED SMOOT,
United States Senate, Washington, D. C. Having copies court records ade, also making other preparation, and expect to leave here to-morrow afternoon for Washington arriving Friday, If reach there Friday morning, will be prepared to meet committee Friday afternoon.
A. B. FALL. The CHAIRMAN. I will say I have two or three telegrams, merely advising me of his whereabouts. The last one was from Palm Beach, simply stating he was going to New Orleans.
Senator WALSH of Montana. Would you put those in ?
Senator Walsh of Montana. Now, Mr. Chariman, some documents are here that have just come into my hands, and are explained this way: When I was leaving for Palm Beach I sent my secretary, Mr. Holland, to the clerk of the committee to secure from him the telegrams submitted to the committee from Mr. McLean and his physician; I desired to make use of them in preparing to examine him, and he got from the secretary of the committee the documents to which I desire to invite your attention; one of them bears no signature, but is entitled:
Memorandum in connection with Senator Walsh's investigation concerning purchase by Mr. Fall of ranch properties adjoining the Fall home ranch at Three Rivers, N. Mex.
Where did you get this document, Mr. Clerk?
Mr. Hill. The old Senate Lands Committee, of the Sixty-seventh Congress.
Senator Walsh of Montana. That is impossible.
The CHAIRMAN. This is my clerk, Senator. I assumed the chairmanship, and he refers to what he found.
Senator Walsh of Montana. Oh, you found this in the files ?
Senator Walsh of Montana. And it was turned over to you by your predecessor?
Mr. HILL. Yes, sir.
Senator Walsh of Montana. Where is the other secretary? You can call him, Senator Smoot?
Senator Smoot. Yes.
Senator WALSH of Montana. You are the former clerk of this committee?
Mr. Eccles. Yes, sir.
Senator Walsh of Montana. Can you tell us about this document [handing to Mr. Eccles the paper entitled "Memorandum in connection with Senator Walsh's investigation concerning purchase by Mr. Fall of ranch properties adjoining the Fall home ranch at Three Rivers, N. Mex.''] ?
Mr. ECCLES (after examination of the document). I have never seen it before.
Senator Walsh of Montana (addressing Mr. Hill). This is one of the documents that you got from Mr. Eccles, is it, Mr. Hill?
Mr. Hill. Yes; it was turned over to me when I took the clerkship of the committee.
Senator Walsh of Montana. And you delivered it to Mr. Holland, my secretary? Mr. Hill. Yes, sir.
Senator WALSII of Montana. This memorandum is as follows (reading]:
MEMORANDUM IN CONNECTION WITH SENATOR WALSH'S INVESTIGATION CON
CERNING PURCHASE BY MR. FALL OF RANCH PROPERTIES ADJOINING THE FALL HOME RANCH AT THREE RIVERS, N. MEX.
It is understood that certain witnesses have been subpænaed from New Mexico, presumably in connection with this ranch purchase, among such witnesses being one of the parties from whom the ranch was purchased, namely, Will Ed. Harris.
It is perfectly true that on December 5, 1921, at El Paso, Tex., Mr. Fall signed a written contract with Mr. Harris and his brother-in-law, Mr. Brownfield, for the purchase of approximately 3,000 acres of land, about 1,500 head of cattle, and certain horses, machinery, etc., comprising what was known as the Harris ranch property, in Lincoln County, near Three Rivers, N. Mex. The consideration for such purchase was approximately $125,000, to be paid from time to time as cattle were delivered and as deeds for the real estate, which was in 8 or 10 different tracts, should be presented and approved by the attorney for Mr. Fall, Mr. J. L. Lawson, of Alamogordo. Mr. Fall at this time paid to Messrs. Harris and Brownfield about $15,000, having the money with him in cash. The other payments were made from time to time and completed after several months, the last approximately 14 or 15 months after the deal was made. It is perfectly true that Mr. Fall borrowed a portion of the money with which to make these payments.
The facts with reference to the securing of the money are these: Knowing that the ranch property must be sold to settle the Harris estate, and desiring to acquire