The trial of Hattie LeBlanc

The following is a newspaper account of the circumstances surrounding the murder of Clarence F. Glover of Waltham, Massachusetts in 1908 and the subsequent trial of Hattie LeBlanc accused of the crime.

Part 2

“At the peak of their prosperity, in 1908, Mrs. Glover went to the little village of [West] Arichat for a visit. She brought back three more feminine LeBlancs. All got domestic situations in Waltham. Hattie, the youngest, Mrs. Glover kept in her own home. Ostensibly, the girl was a servant, but she was treated like one of the family. She was 16 and pretty. Mrs. Glover was years older and no longer pretty.

“Glover soon began to pursue his wife’s unsophisticated little maid. Hattie, frightened, fearful, did not know what to do. Once she tried asking Mrs. Glover for protection. But the wife coldly told Hattie that she didn’t see what there was about her to attract Glover and added that he always made trouble with her servants. After that, the inevitable happened. Hattie submitted to her employer’s advances. After all, he had shown himself to be one friend in that house heretofore and she liked him.

“They met evenings. She and Glover left the house at different times and in different directions and met at the dark and empty laundry. Hattie went willingly enough. As for Mrs. Glover, she certainly knew, and she certainly didn’t do the one thing that would have stopped all this – send Hattie back to [West] Arichat.

“One night a passerby heard a man groaning in front of the private hospital of Dr. Couzens in Waltham. T.E. Connors, the passerby, leaned down and heard the faint whisper ‘I’m shot. Please get help for me.’

“‘Who shot you?’ asked Connors.

“‘A woman.’

“‘What woman?’

“‘I don’t know.’

“‘You must know. Who was she?’

“‘Hattie LeBlanc shot me.’

“The man lapsed into unconsciousness. Connors summoned help and Glover was carried into the hospital. Here he revived partially and was able to give the police a more detailed accounting of the shooting.

“Hattie LeBlanc and he were in the laundry together, he told official questioners. They were ‘chatting pleasantly’ when suddenly he looked up and saw her pointing a gun at him.

“’She seemed insane and I noticed a peculiar flash in her eyes,’ he said. ‘I turned to leave the office. The enraged girl placed the muzzle of the revolver against my back and fired. I turned and grappled with her and we had a terrible struggle, during which the revolver was discharged again and the bullet hit me in the shoulder. Hattie screamed and ran out of the office in the direction of the river. I threw the gun behind a fence and crawled on my hands and knees to the hospital.’

“Thus ran the dying statement of Clarence Glover. And doubt was immediately cast on it from two sources. The gun which he said he had thrown was found only a few feet from the doorstep where he had been lying. And the medical examiner did not believe the shots had been fired as Glover said they had. The bullet in the wounded man’s shoulder, according to the physician, had been fired from some distance and not right into his back. The other bullet, which had plowed through stomach and liver, had been fired from the opposite direction.”