Two items from consecutive issues of The Chatham Record illustrate both an editor’s change of heart and his gentle finger-wag to an overexcited reporter.
This first item ran in the H.A London, Editor, section of the April 1, 1914 edition of The Chatham Record.
“The municipal authorities at Chapel Hill and the University authorities are to be commended for their arrest of the persons charged with gambling, and it is to be hoped that such an example will be made of these guilty persons as to deter others from gambling. It is to be regretted that five of the gamblers are students of the University, but where there are nearly nine hundred young men together as there are at the University it is not unnatural or strange that a few of them should be ‘black sheep’ in the flock.
Even worse than the gambling, if possible, was the cowardly attack made by some of the gamblers upon the correspondent of the newspapers who wrote up an account of their arrest. Such men should be severely punished, and road sentences would be a deserved penalty for them.”
It would seem a few facts subsequently came to light, because this item appeared in the same section the following week, April 8, 1914:
“The sensational report published in the daily papers last week about the arrest of gamblers at Chapel Hill seems to have been greatly exaggerated by an excited and indiscreet correspondent. Especially exaggerated was his report of the alleged attempt to ‘mob’ him, which really existed only in his excited imagination, and was ‘much ado about nothing.’
We cannot too highly commend the attitude and conduct of the University authorities throughout this unfortunate episode.”