Whyos: November 2, 1884

(New York Herald, November 2, 1884)

When a man who has been helping a fraction of humanity to get gloriously fuddled at his own particular bar takes it into his head to make the metropolis howl he does it with a satisfactory completeness and all the assurances of one who knows his business; and so when Carlos Passio left his saloon on Front street, Brooklyn, to struggle with the exhilarating concoctions of the Bowery he caused everyone in sight to pause and watch the exercises with unflagging interest.Patrick Maguire was among those who paused. He is a gentleman who is professional and socially connected with the Whyo gang. For him the scene had a strange fascination. Like all the fraternity, he yearned to take care of this stranger who was dissipating his substance and look after him and it. So he took Signor Passio in hand and also to his sister’s house, at No. 175 Monroe street. The Italian had $165. That invested him with additional interest for the benevolent Whyo. So Passio was entertained, but just how he hardly knew, for he found himself at one A.M. yesterday on the street, with lots of melancholy but no money. He was trying to recall how the exchange came about, when the gentle Whyo appeared again and proceeded to relieve Passio of his watch, which through some inexplicable oversight had been neglected. Then the Italian rebelled against these kindly offices, out flashed the national emblem — a full-fledged stiletto — and in the struggle which ensued the Italian got it twice into Maguire’s leg and once across his head. A policeman appeared at this juncture, and the performance was not allowed to continue.

When the narrative was told in the station house Maguire was searched and $31 was found in his pocket. Where did he get it? From his sister, Mrs. Golden. She was sent for. Yes, she had given the money to her dear brother. What were the denominations of the bills? There she was floored and went away leaving a strong flavor of untruthfulness pervading her story. But she was in the Tombs Police Court early yesterday morning. She seemed quite excited, too, for a while, but went away before the case was called. Then a touching spectacle as presented. The Italian refused to prefer a charge of robbery. The Whyo consetned to bear his stabs without a murmur. Even the official complaint of intoxication or disorderly conduct somehow was unspoken, and Carlos Passio and Patrick Maguire went away together free and like bosom friends.

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Max Sparber

Max Sparber is a playwright, journalist, and history detective in Omaha, Nebraska.