Major Participants

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Mary Phagan, Mrs. Leo Frank, Mrs. J. W. Coleman, Judge L. S. Roan, and Hugh Dorsey, in Collier's Weekly, December 19, 1914. Courtesy of University of Georgia Libraries via Digital Library of Georgia.

Leo Frank’s trial took place from July 28 to August 26, 1913. Major participants included:

  • Jim Conley: sweeper at National Pencil Company; primary witness for prosecution.
  • Hugh M. Dorsey: solicitor general (prosecutor) for the Atlanta Judicial Circuit. Dorsey worked closely, although not always harmoniously, with police to prepare their case.
  • Leo Frank: defendant
  • Lucille and Rae Frank: Frank’s wife, Lucille, and his mother, Rae, attended each day of the trial. Both women publicly professed their belief in Frank’s innocence and criticized the investigation.
  • Newt Lee: night watchman at National Pencil Company; Lee discovered Mary Phagan’s body.
  • Alonzo Mann: Frank’s office boy and a character witness.
  • L. S. Roan: judge assigned to case.
  • Luther Rosser and Reuben Arnold: lead defense attorneys. Rosser had an outstanding reputation as a trial lawyer who specialized in cross-examination.
  • William Smith: Conley’s attorney; prepared Conley for cross-examination.
  • Jury: composed of all white men.
  • Crowds: standing-room only, plus many more outside the courtroom. The crowd, which favored the prosecution, responded loudly to some court actions.