Three other phases of Captain von Papen’s campaigns against the Allies
upon American territory as a base of operations remain to be set forth.
They are his supervision of a bureau for obtaining fraudulent passports
for German reservists ordered home to fight for the Fatherland, the
fomentation of insurrections in the colonies of the Allies and of war
between Mexico and the United States.


The passport bureau is a striking instance of Germany’s disregard of the
rights and laws in a neutral country. With the sending of Great
Britain’s ultimatum to Germany, the cable between Germany and the United
States had been cut. The United States forbade the use of wireless for
the transmission of messages in code to Germany, or the use of the cable
for cipher dispatches to the warring countries. The Allies’ war vessels
began at once to search all passenger ships for German citizens, taking
them off and sending them to concentration camps. Meantime, von Papen,
Boy-Ed and the other German officials realized the utmost necessity of
transmitting to their respective home offices information concerning the
developments in America. They knew also the vital necessity of sending
back to Berlin, army and naval officers who had been selected and
trained for special commissions in the event of war.

But they had been taught in their early days the value of fraudulent
passports, and to these they turned at once. The Germans had at first no
regular passport bureau for the aid of German reservists. Every German,
left to his own resources, did the best he could under the
circumstances. Carl A. Luederitz, German consul in Baltimore, has been
indicted on a charge of conspiracy in connection with obtaining a
fraudulent passport for Horst von der Goltz under the name of Bridgeman
Taylor. The young German has confessed that with the aid of Herr
Luederitz he applied for a passport and on August 31, 1914, obtained one
bearing the signature of William J. Bryan, then Secretary of State. To
get that document von der Goltz took an oath that he was born in San

But this method was rather loose, and upon Captain von Papen devolved
the necessity of establishing a regular system. The military attaché,
always resourceful and daring, selected for the work Lieutenant Hans von
Wedell. Von Wedell had been a newspaper reporter in New York, later a
lawyer; but when he received orders from Captain von Papen, he gladly
undertook the work in New York, bureaus being started in other cities.
He opened an office in Bridge Street, New York, and began to send out
emissaries to Germans in Hoboken, directing them to apply for passports.
He sent others to the haunts of hoboes on the Bowery, to the cheap
hotels, and other gathering places of the downs-and-outs, offering ten,
fifteen and twenty dollars to men who would apply for passports. He
spent much time at the Deutscher Verein, at the Elks clubhouse, where he
would meet his agents, give them instructions and receive passports. His
bills were paid by Captain von Papen, as revealed by the attaché’s
cheques and counterfoils. These show that on November 24, 1914, von
Papen paid him $500; that on December 5, he gave him $500 and then $300,
the latter being for journey money; that he paid von Wedell’s bills at
the Deutscher Verein, amounting in November, 1914, to $38.05. Meantime,
he was using Mrs. von Wedell as a courier, sending her with messages to
Germany. On December 22, 1914, he paid Mrs. von Wedell, by his own
account, $800.


The passports which von Wedell, and later on his successor Carl Ruroede,
Sr., obtained, were used for the benefit of German officers whom the
General Staff had ordered back to Berlin. American passports, then
Mexican, Swiss, Norwegian and the passports of South American countries,
were seized eagerly by various reservists bound for the front. Stories
were told in New York of Germans and Austrians, who had been captured by
the Russians, sent to Siberia as prisoners of war, escaping therefrom,
and making their way by caravan through China, embarking on vessels
bound for America, arriving in New York and thence shipping for neutral
countries. Among them was an Austrian officer, an expert observer in
aeroplane reconnaissance, who lost both his feet in Siberia, but who
escaped to this country. He was ordered home because of his extreme
value in reconnoitring. The British learned of him, however, and took
him off a ship at Falmouth to spend the remainder of the war in a prison

Captain von Papen used the passport bureau to obtain passports for spies
whom he wished to send to England, France, Italy and Russia. Among these
men were Kuepferle and von Breechow, both of whom were captured in
England, having in their possession fraudulent passports. Kuepferle and
von Breechow both confessed.

But so reckless was von Wedell’s and Ruroede’s work that the authorities
soon discovered the practice. Two hangers-on at the Mills Hotel called
upon the writer one day and told him of von Wedell’s practices, related
how they had blackmailed him out of $50, gave his private telephone
numbers and set forth his haunts. As a result of this and other
information reaching the Department of Justice, Albert G. Adams, a
clever agent, started out one day, got into the confidence of Ruroede
and offered to get passports for him for $50 each. Meantime, von Wedell
had gone on a trip to Cuba, apparently on passport matters, and Adams,
posing as a pro-German, got into the inner ring of the passport-buyers.
He was informed by Ruroede as to what was wanted.


Though in the early days of the war it had not been necessary for the
applicant to give to the Federal authorities anything more than a
general description of himself, the reports of German spies in the
Allies’ countries became so insistent that the Government directed that
the document, bearing the United States seal, must have the picture of
the person to whom it was issued. The Germans, however, were not
worried. It was a simple matter to give a general description of a man’s
eyes, colour of hair, age and so forth, that would fit the man who was
actually to use the document and then forward the picture of the
applicant, who, getting the passport, would sell it. Even though the
official stamp was placed on the picture, the Germans were not dismayed.
Federal Agent Adams rushed into Ruroede’s office one day waving five
passports which had been issued to him in a batch by Uncle Sam. Adams
seemed proud of his work. Ruroede was delighted.

“I knew I could get these passports easily,” boasted Ruroede. “Why, if
Lieutenant Hans von Wedell had kept on here, he never could have done
this. He always was getting into a muddle.”

“But how can you use these passports with these pictures on them?” asked
the agent, curiously.

“Oh, that’s easy,” answered Ruroede. “Come into the back room and I’ll
show you.” The agent followed the German, who immediately soaked one of
the passports with a damp cloth and with adhesive paste fastened a
photograph of another man over the original upon which the imprint of
the United States seal had been made.

“We wet the photograph,” said Ruroede, “and then we affix the picture of
the man who is to use it. The new photograph also is dampened, but when
it is fastened to the passport, there still remains a sort of vacuum in
spots between the new picture and the old, because of ridges made by the
seal. Well, turn the passport upside down, place it on a soft ground
made with a silk handkerchief, and then, taking a paper cutter with a
dull point, just trace the letters on the seal. The result is that the
new photograph looks exactly as if it had been stamped by Uncle Sam. You
can’t tell the difference.”

Through the work of Adams, four Germans, one of them an officer of the
German reserves, were arrested on the Norwegian-America liner
_Bergensfjord_, outward bound to Bergen, Norway. They had passports
issued to them through Ruroede’s bureau under the American names of
Howard Paul Wright, Herbert S. Wilson, Peter Hansen and Stanley F.
Martin. Their real names were Arthur Sachse, Pelham Heights, N.Y., who
was returning to Germany to become a lieutenant in the German Army;
Walter Miller, August R. Meyer, and Herman Wegener, who had come to New
York from Chile, on their way to the Fatherland. Ruroede pleaded guilty
and was sentenced to three years in Atlanta, Ga., prison. The four
Germans, also pleading guilty, protested they had taken the passports
out of patriotism and were fined $200 each.

Von Wedell, himself, was a passenger on the steamer _Bergensfjord_, but
when he was lined up with the other passengers, the Federal agents, who
did not have a description of him, were deceived, and let the vessel
proceed. He was taken off the ship by the British and placed in prison.

The arrest of Ruroede exposed the New York bureau, and made it necessary
for the Germans to shift their base of operations; but it did not put an
end to the fraudulent passport conspiracies, as will be shown. In the
face of the exposures, so daring were the German agents that they
continued to commit fraud upon the United States, and to put in danger
every honest American travelling in Europe with an American passport.


Captain von Papen was a supervisor and a promoter of sedition. His
headquarters in Wall Street were the centre of lines running out to
British and French colonies, where Germany planned at critical moments
to start revolutions, if it would help her interests.

One of the enterprises which Captain von Papen, acting under orders from
Berlin, supervised in the United States, was a revolt against British
rule in India. Preparations for this insurrection had been in the making
for years, and, in the course of all of them, German agents were working
with the Hindus and also with the German-Irish in America, the latter
organization being really headquarters for many Hindus travelling from
Germany to England, then to United States, on their way back to India.
There has been for years a sort of understanding between pro-German
Irish and certain members of an American society interested in India. In
this organization, prior to the war, were men who were plotting a
revolution in India, who were in touch with German agents and who
received German money.

Immediately after the outbreak of the war, von Papen and his agents
poured more money into Hindu pockets, and made arrangements to supply
arms and ammunition to Hindus. For the promotion of this German-Hindu
conspiracy, two other centres were established. One was fathered by
Germans in San Francisco, and another was at Shanghai, China.
Confessions by men, who were active in the enterprise, tell how Hindus
in sympathy with the sedition plots conferred with certain German
officials in Berlin, that they came to New York—this in the course of
the war—where they met certain pro-German-Irishmen and were aided
financially. From New York they journeyed to Chicago, where more money
was handed to them, and then to San Francisco, where they had talks with
Hindu revolutionists—whose openly avowed aim is in rousing the people of
India to celebrate the year 1917, “the diamond jubilee of the mutiny of
1857,” by a general and universal rising against British rule in India.


Many Hindus, who were assembled in the West, also had an opportunity to
study the fine art of explosive and bomb making at a bomb factory up in
the state of Washington. On several occasions groups of Hindus equipped
with money and carrying secretly arms with them sailed from San
Francisco for the Philippines, planning thence to go to India.
Furthermore, ships were chartered by German agencies to carry arms and
ammunition to India and Ceylon. The American schooner _Annie Larsen_ and
the ship _Maverick_, both owned by a man named Fred Jebsen, a German
naval officer, were chartered on the Pacific coast to sail for India in
June, 1915. The _Annie Larsen_ was seized by the United States officials
at Hoquiam, Washington, and on board was found a cargo of rifles and
ammunition. The _Maverick_, however, got away also equipped with rifles
and cartridges, carrying a number of Hindus. The good ship had a most
eventful voyage, the sailors and the passengers suffering many
hardships, and finally reached Batavia, where she was seized by the
Dutch authorities.

In the early stages of his plans, Captain von Papen had an opportunity
to send a rather detailed report of events in India to the secret office
in Berlin. The chance came through Captain Archibald, who was about to
sail from this country, and Captain von Papen, accordingly, prepared in
code a long message. This document, which has been translated, is
illuminating. Here it is:

* * * * *

“Since October, 1914, there have been various local mutinies of
Mohammedan native troops, one practically succeeding the other. From the
last reports, it appears that the Hindu troops are going to join the

“The Afghan army is ready to attack India. The army holds the position
on one side of the Utak River. The British army is reported to hold the
other side of the said river. The three bridges connecting both sides
have been blown up by the British.

“In the garrison located on the Kathiawar Peninsula, Indian mutineers
stormed the arsenal. Railroad and wireless station have been destroyed.
The Sikh troops have been removed from Beluchistan; only English,
Mohammedans and Hindu troops remain there.

“The Twenty-third Cavalry Regiment at Lahore revolted; the police
station and Town House were stormed. The Indian troops in Somaliland in
Labakoran are trying to effect a junction with the Senussi. All Burmah
is ready to revolt.

“In Calcutta, unrest is reported with street fighting; in Lahore, a bank
was robbed; every week at least two Englishmen are killed; in the
north-western district many Englishmen killed, munitions and other
material taken, railroads destroyed; a relief train was repulsed.

“Everywhere great unrest, in Benares a bank has been stormed.

“Revolts in Chitral very serious; barracks and Government buildings
destroyed. The Hurti Mardin Brigade, under General Sir E. Wood, has been
ordered there. Deputy Commissioner of Lahore wounded by a bomb in the
Anakali Bazaar.

“Mohammedan squadron of the cavalry regiment in Nowschera deserted over
Chang, south-west Peshawar. Soldiers threw bombs against the family of
the Maharajah of Mysore. One child and two servants killed, his wife
mortally wounded.

“In Ceylon a state of war has been declared.”

* * * * *


The extensive conspiracy on the part of Germany to start a revolt in
Ireland has been thoroughly set forth in the public prints in connection
with the arrest and trial of Sir Roger Casement as a rebel. Sir Roger
worked openly among the Irish prisoners in Germany, travelling backwards
and forwards between Ireland and Germany by means of a German submarine.
Nevertheless, a very large and important American phase of this whole
revolution occupied von Papen’s attention prior to his recall. German
agents here were in touch with the Irishmen in America, who were
actively co-operating with Patrick H. Pearse.

German funds were poured into Irish hands in America, the money being
used for the purchase of arms and the printing of seditious papers and
leaflets. More than $100,000 was collected in America for Ireland
between September, 1914, and April, 1915. Plans also were worked out
with the aid of Germans in America to ship arms and supplies to the
Irish rebels.

There also have been vague reports of dramatic schemes in America to arm
the Arabs in northern Africa and start an uprising against British rule.
There have been signs of dramatic plottings to stir up trouble in
Afghanistan and in Egypt. It is a fact that various attempts have been
made to ship rifles and cartridges from the United States to South
America and then from South America to Africa. Some of these have proved
successful. In other cases, the shipments have been stopped.


_Throughout all the crises arising between the United States and Germany
over the submarine campaign, German agents constantly kept in view the
possibility of a war between their country and this nation._ They
prepared for it.

“Before I left New York,” confesses von der Goltz, “I had some
conversation with Captain von Papen about the war, and while speaking of
the end of the war Captain von Papen said: ‘_Should things start to look
bad for us, there will be something happen over here._’ In connection
with other statements of his, he speculated on America joining Germany,
or on a possible uprising.” The significance of that remark was shown
two years and a half later when on January 31, 1917, three days before
the break between the United States and Germany, an order went forth
from the German Embassy in Washington. Immediately the machinery of
every German merchantman interned in American ports was wrecked. The
damage was $30,000,000.

Here again Captain von Papen’s and Captain Boy-Ed’s advice and orders
were involved. _It devolved_ upon Captain von Papen not only to keep in
thorough touch with the development of American military affairs, but
also _to study constantly the topography of the United States, the plan
of cities and their surroundings from a military viewpoint. Upon him
fell the task of stationing German reservists in the various cities and
towns where, in case of hostilities, they would be valuable to the
German cause._ German efficiency and foresight came to the front in
connection with these plans. _There were under consideration at one time
when the crisis between the United States and Germany was acute,
military plans to start a reign of terror in America._

First of all, Captain von Papen and Captain Boy-Ed _supervised the
purchase of ground near New York and Boston, which was to be used for
the construction of concrete bases for big guns in the same manner in
which the Germans prepared in Belgium, England and France prior to the
war_. There is absolute proof that German representatives spent money
for this purpose, and that they caused to be built foundations that
could be used for big guns for the purpose of making an attack upon New
York City, for instance. But that was only a part of the scheme.

When von Papen and his colleague Boy-Ed were recalled, it was announced
by the State Department that the reason was “improper activities in
military and naval affairs.” A brief summary of Captain von Papen’s
activities shows that he violated the courtesies extended to him as a
diplomatic agent in secretly sending code messages by couriers; that he
handed out money for fraudulent passports; that he schemed in military
enterprises against Canada; that he plotted with Ambassador Dumba to
start strikes in American factories; that he plotted in connection with
other criminal activities in this country, such as blowing up factories;
that he was a promoter of seditious enterprises; and that he and his
associates schemed to start war between the United States and Mexico.

When he set foot upon the gangway of the steamship _Noordam_, homeward
bound, he said: “I leave my post without any feeling of bitterness,
because I know full well that when history is once written it will
establish our clean record, despite all the misrepresentations spread
broadcast.” But at the moment he handed out that statement he was
carrying under his arm a portfolio which was a veritable diary of his
payments to law-breakers. Again he gave proof of his expression about
“stupid Americans,” because he thought he could make those “stupid
Americans” believe him, and that he could sneak the proofs of his
law-breaking past the British at Falmouth. Again the stupidity was on
his side.

Wolf von Igel, von Papen’s Man Friday and custodian of his secret
documents, was hustling about his private office on the twenty-fifth
floor of 60, Wall Street, on the morning of April 19, 1916. He was
hurried. His full, grey eyes glistened with excitement and he curled his
stubby moustache as he glanced upon heaps of papers carefully arranged
on the long council table and on the floor. Then squaring his stocky
shoulders, he turned again to the big safe, bearing the seal of the
Imperial German Government, and swinging back the heavy doors, extracted
another bundle of papers which he ranged among the other sheets with
military precision.

“It’s eleven o’clock and Koenig should be here now,” he said in German
to another employé of von Papen’s who was with him. “These papers must
be packed up at once.”

He paused and then began a mental inventory of each stack of papers to
make sure none was missing. All these documents—there were hundreds of
them, and their weight, as revealed by a government agent, was seventy
pounds—had belonged to von Papen. They revealed the inner workings of
the German spy system in America and a great part of the world. They
told many of the details. Those papers, connecting the German Government
with violators of law in America, were a vast responsibility for any
officer of von Igel’s age. Naturally, the young man was keyed to a high
pitch of excitement; for hitherto they had come from the safe only
piecemeal, and to permit daylight to reach so many at one time was
almost a little more than von Igel’s nerve could stand.

Perhaps he had a presentiment. In fact, secret agencies had been at work
to instil in him a feeling of uneasiness. Von Igel, stopping again and
again to twirl his moustache, knew that von Papen and Captain Tauscher
had been indicted on a charge of plotting to blow up Welland Canal. Word
also had come to him that still more ominous events were portending and
the idea—by stealthy prearrangement—had been given to him to ship all
the documents to Washington, where they would be absolutely safe.
Therefore von Igel was both busy with his packing and intensely

“A man to see you, Herr von Igel,” announced a stout German attendant.
“He refuses to tell his business except that it is important.”

Von Igel was gruffly directing his agent to make the stranger specify
his name and mission when the door was flung open. In dashed Joseph A.
Baker, of the Department of Justice, in charge of Federal Agents Storck,
Underhill and Grgurevich.

“I have a warrant for your arrest!” shouted Baker, who had a warrant
charging the German with complicity in the Welland Canal enterprise. Von
Igel eyed the intruders for the fraction of a second. With one spring he
reached the safe, and swinging the doors shut, was turning the
combination when Baker leaped upon him bearing him to the floor. Then
followed a battle of four Americans against two Germans, the attendant
having been quieted by the flash of revolvers.

“This means war,” yelled von Igel. “This is a part of the German Embassy
and is German territory. You’ve no right here.”

“You’re under arrest,” said Baker soothingly, as he pulled a revolver.

“You shoot and there’ll be war,” answered von Igel, while Storck and
Underhill grappled with a third. “I’m connected with the Embassy and you
can’t arrest me.” The first skirmish was quickly ended by von Igel,
realizing the importance of the documents entrusted to his care and
straining every resource to outwit his captors, he fought again and
again, facing revolvers and braving fists to reach the telephone to call
for the help of the German Ambassador and prevent the officers from
gathering up the documents. But he was unsuccessful. As the agents led
him from the office, they met Koenig, von Igel’s associate, and von
Papen’s agent in many enterprises just entering. Koenig, who was already
facing three charges growing out of his activities, was rendered
speechless by the sight of von Igel in custody and some of his documents
in possession of the government.

The mass of documents—it makes no difference whether the Secretary of
State, for reasons of State or of law, orders their return—not only set
forth the secrets of Germany’s activities in this country; but they also
told what part von Igel and Koenig played in the invisible war in
America. They show how both men were errand boys, carriers of cash and
of messages for von Papen and Boy-Ed.


Concerning young von Igel there is much mystery. At the outbreak of the
war he was reported to be wandering around looking for a job, willing to
work for any wages. Then von Papen picked him up, paying him a salary of
$238 a month. There is a rumour, too, that he is a grandson of Graf von
Waldersee, one time Germany’s Chief of Staff. That he is a man of
importance is indicated by the manner in which he was trusted by von
Papen, Boy-Ed, and Dr. Albert. When in an automobile ride from Captain
Tauscher’s home on Long Island with von Papen and Dr. Albert, he met
with an injury, he was hurried secretly to a hospital. Every effort was
made to hide his identity; but Dr. Albert and von Papen visited him
frequently. Von Papen paid the hospital bills and charged them up to
“War Intelligence.”

Almost immediately upon beginning service under von Papen, he leased the
offices in Wall Street, putting down in the contract “advertising” as
the purpose to which the rooms were to be devoted and never making any
statement as to his connection with the German Embassy. He quickly gave
von Papen every reason to trust him fully and won the respect of the
reckless attaché. Though he did not begin work for von Papen until
September, 1914, he had, it is charged, a hand in the first Welland
Canal enterprise.


Von Igel also handled money for von Papen. For instance, on March 27,
1915, the latter gave to his secretary a cheque payable to his order for
$1,000 and on the counterfoil of his cheque-book he wrote “for A.
Kaltschmidt, Detroit,” who since has been accused by the Canadian
authorities as an accomplice in the project against Canadian armouries
and munition factories. It was von Igel, furthermore, who cashed many
cheques for von Papen, the proceeds of which were to go to secret agents
starting on missions to the enemy’s country. He carried confidential
messages which von Papen would not put in writing. He handled the code
books in compiling and deciphering messages. He carried orders to
Koenig, conferring with him and directing him when to meet von Papen.

When von Papen was preparing to leave the country at the request of
President Wilson, he began to turn over his documents to von Igel for
safe keeping. He gave him instructions as to the custody of the papers
and the cleaning up of work left undone. In his regard, he undoubtedly
followed Dr. Albert’s instructions put in a letter from San Francisco:
“If you should leave New York before my return, we must try to come to
some agreement about pending questions by writing. Please instruct Mr.
Amanuensis Igel as precisely as possible. You will then receive in
Germany the long-intended report of the expenses paid through my account
on your behalf.”

So von Igel, as a trusted clerk, took unto himself the duties of
confidential man for von Papen and for other big Germans who began but
were obliged to leave unfinished certain projects in this country. There
were many lines of information and activities converging to von Papen,
afterwards to von Igel. After von Rintelen left this country, part of
his schemes were entrusted to von Igel, who saw men with whom von
Rintelen or his assistants had dealt. For instance, he has been indicted
jointly with Dr. Scheele, Captain Gustave Steinberg, von Rintelen’s aid,
for complicity in a plan to ship articles abroad under fraudulent
manifests and thus deceive the Allies. One of these schemes was to
export lubricating oil, much needed in Germany, to Sweden as fertilizer.
Some of the payments for this purpose were made after von Rintelen
sailed for home.

With von Papen gone and Koenig arrested, von Igel became a somewhat
important person, taking upon himself the attaché’s prestige and a lot
of Koenig’s work after the latter’s arrest. Many, many cheques were
cashed by von Igel in the four months intervening between the attaché’s
departure and the former’s arrest. He carried on von Papen’s work in a
miniature way, conferring with many secret agents, giving orders and
preparing reports in code for despatching to Germany.

While von Igel, in point of family, education and confidential
association with the big German agents in America, is an important link
in the Teutonic spy chain, Paul Koenig (“P. K.”), is more striking
because of his rough activities, his underground connections and his
associations with law-breakers. He was a sort of business manager of
Germany’s secret service in the eastern part of America.


“P. K.,” as his hirelings called him, was a sort of boss, an unmerciful
autocrat in the lower world, physically fearless, trusting no man and
driving every man to work by the use of violent abusive language,
boastful of his skill, physical prowess and his craft. In appearance, he
gives this impression. A tall, broad-shouldered man, he has bony fingers
and arms long and powerful reaching almost to his knees. His dark, sharp
eyes dart suspiciously at you from beneath black, arching eyebrows,
showing defiance and yet a certain caution. A truly typical person he is
for the work for which he was selected, and though perhaps a little too
boastful, such supreme confidence undoubtedly is a necessary attribute
of any man who would acquire any degree of success in such undertakings.

Koenig is another product of the Hamburg-American Steamship Line—the
Kaiser’s very own. Prior to the war he was superintendent of the
company’s police, having a half-score men under him and keeping watch on
the pier workers or investigating complaints received by the management.
He had grown to that task from similar training in the Atlas Service, a
subsidiary corporation. He had spent years among longshoremen, bossing
them and cursing them. He knew wharf rats, water-front crooks, and was
thoroughly acquainted with their schemes—as naturally such a man would
be. He understood thoroughly how to handle men of the rough type.

When the war started and von Papen was searching for an assistant
organizer, he found in Koenig’s little police force a splendid nucleus
of just what he needed. At his request the _Hamburg-American Line_
quickly put Koenig at von Papen’s disposal and straightway von Papen
began to link up to Koenig’s police a number of channels of information,
to supply him with reservists for special assignments, to suggest to him
how to spread out and instal spies in various places to gather important
facts. Koenig accordingly became the business manager of a part of
Germany’s secret service, not only gathering information, but acting as
a link in the labyrinth system employed by von Papen in communicating
with the reservist or agent selected to do certain work in behalf of the

How varied and steady was his work for von Papen is revealed by the
latter’s cheques. Here are a few excerpts: “March 29, 1915, Paul Koenig
(Secret Service bill), $509.11; … April 18, Paul Koenig (Secret
Service bill), $90.94; … May 11, Paul Koenig (Secret Service), $66.71;
… July 16, Paul Koenig (compensation for F. J. Busse), $150; …
August 4, Paul Koenig (5 bills Secret Service), $118.92,” and so on.
Remember also that von Papen only paid from his cheque account for a
part of Koenig’s expenses, other German officials who employed him
receiving a bill for the special work.


“P. K.” also kept a most carefully prepared note-book of his spies and
of persons in New York, Boston and other cities who were useful in
furnishing him information. In another book he kept a complete record of
the assignments on which he sent his men, the purpose and the cost. In
this book of names were several hundred persons—German reservists,
German-Americans and American clerks, scientists and city and Federal
employés—showing that his district was very large and that his range for
picking facts and for supervising other pro-German propaganda was broad.
For his own hirelings or reservists, over whom he domineered, he had
specially worked out a system of numbers and initials to be used in
communicating with them. These numbers were changed at regular intervals
and a system of progression was devised by which the agent would know
when his number changed. He also employed suitable aliases for his
workers. These men likewise had codes for writing letters and for
telephone communication, and they knew that _on fixed days these codes

Always alert for a listening ear or a watchful eye—because playing the
eavesdropper was his job—he looked for spies on himself. He believed
that his telephone wire was tapped and that he was overheard when he
spoke over the telephone. Accordingly, he instructed his men in various
code words. For instance, if he told an agent to meet him at five
o’clock at South Ferry that meant: “Meet me at seven o’clock at
Forty-second Street and Broadway.”

His wire was not tapped, but P. K. kept the men who were spying on him
exceeding busy and worried. He would receive a call on the telephone and
would direct the man at the other end of the wire to meet him in fifteen
minutes at Pabst’s, Harlem. Now from Koenig’s office in the
Hamburg-American Building to 125th Street, it is practically impossible
to make the journey in a quarter of an hour; but his watchers learned
that Pabst’s, Harlem, meant Borough Hall, Brooklyn. Just as he eluded
espionage for days and months, this man, skilled in shadowing others and
in doing the vanishing act whenever necessary, boasted that the Federal
authorities or the police never would get him. “They did get Dr.
Albert’s portfolio,” he said one day, “but they never will get mine, for
I won’t carry one.”


He sought likewise to elude Americans trailing him. He never went out in
the daytime that he did not have one or two of his agents trailing him
to see whether he was being shadowed. He used to turn a corner suddenly
and stand still so that a detective following came unexpectedly face to
face with him and betrayed his identity. Koenig would laugh heartily and
pass on. He loved to jibe the American authorities and ofttimes he would
dodge around a corner and then reappear to confront the detective with a
merry jest and pass on. By that means he came to know many agents of the
Department of Justice and many New York detectives. When he started out
at night he used to have three of his own men follow him, and by a
prearranged system of signals inform him if any strangers were following

The task, consequently, of keeping watch of Koenig’s movements was most
difficult and required clever guessing and keen-headed work on the part
of the New York police. So elusive did Koenig become that it was
necessary for Captain Tunney to evolve a new system for shadowing Koenig
and yet not betray to him the fact that he was under surveillance. One
detective, accordingly, would be stationed several blocks away and would
start out ahead of Koenig. The “front shadow” was kept informed by a
series of signals whenever Koenig turned a corner so that the man in
front might dart down the street beyond and by a series of manœuvres
again get ahead of him. If Koenig boarded a street car, the man ahead
would hail the car several blocks beyond, thus avoiding any suspicion
from Koenig. In other instances, detectives, guessing that he was about
to take a car would board it several blocks before it got abreast of
Koenig. Because of his alertness, he kept Detectives Barnitz, Coy, Terra
and Corell always on the edge; but they finally ran him down.

It was never possible to overhear any conversation between Koenig and
any man to whom he was giving instructions. Koenig always made it a
point to meet his agents—some of his workers he never permitted to meet
him at all—in the open, in parks in broad daylight, in the Pennsylvania
Station, or the Grand Central Station. There, as he talked to them, he
could make sure that nobody was eavesdropping. In the open he met many a
man for the first time, talked with him and then said:

“Be at Third Avenue and Fifty-ninth Street at 2.30 to-morrow afternoon
beside a public telephone booth there. When the telephone rings, you
answer it.”

The man would obey the request. Promptly at the minute named, the
telephone rang and the man answered the telephone. A strange voice spoke
to him and told him to do certain things, perhaps to be at a similar
place on the following day and receive a message, or he would receive
instructions as to what he should do and where he should go to meet
another man, who would give him money and instructions as to what he
should do. The voice at the other end of the wire was speaking from a
public telephone booth and was thus reasonably sure also that the wire
was not tapped.

Koenig trusted no man. _He never sent an agent out on a job without
detailing another man to follow that man and report back to him the
movements of the agent and the person whom that man met._ He was severe
with his men when they made their reports to him, and always insisted
that they do exactly what he told them and never permitted them to use
their own initiative. So stubborn was he in sticking to his own ideas
that some of his men used to call him “the Westphalian, bull-headed

As to the outline of Koenig’s activities, his book of spies, the great
mass of information gained by trailing him, and by study of the
documents seized in his office, show that _he had spies along the water
front on every big steamship pier. He had eavesdroppers in hotels,
telephone switchboards, among porters, window-cleaners, among bank
clerks, corporation employés and in the Police Department._

To Roger B. Wood, formerly assistant United States District-Attorney in
New York, is due the credit for the unfolding of the intricate and
varied schemes charged against Koenig. He studied the evidence for
months as it was developed by Federal agents under Superintendent Offley
of the New York office and Captain Tunney, and prepared for trial the
cases against the German agent.

One of Koenig’s spies was listed in his book as “Special Agent A. S.,”
namely Otto F. Mottola, a detective in the warrant squad of the New York
police force whom he paid for special work. The note-book revealed
Mottola as Antonio Marino, afterwards changed to Antonio Salvatore.
Evidence was produced at Mottola’s trial at Police Headquarters that
Koenig paid him for investigating a passenger who sailed on the
_Bergensfjord_; that he often called up Mottola, asked questions and
received answers which Koenig’s stenographer took down in shorthand. In
other words, Koenig sought to keep closely informed as to the
developments at Police Headquarters, and to be advised, perhaps, of the
inquiry being made by the police into the activities of the Germans.
Mottola was dismissed from the force because of false statements made to
his superiors when asked about Koenig.


“P. K.” also despatched men to Canada to gain information concerning the
Canadian preparations for war, and facts that could be used by the
Germans here in planning attacks upon munition factories, railroads and
transportation facilities in the Dominion. An Irish employé of the
_Atlas Line_ has been arrested on a charge of planning with Koenig to
start a “military enterprise” against the Dominion. The employé, named
Justice, is accused of going to Quebec to ascertain the number of troops
which were being transported by the Dominion of Canada to ports in
France and Great Britain; the names of the steamships on which said
troops were being transported; the kind and quantity of supplies which
were being shipped from the Dominion to France and Great Britain, and
other information which would or might be of value to the German
Government, and which would assist the military operations of the German

_The complaint stated that the undertaking was one of hazard, and came
within the purview of the statute forbidding the undertaking of any
military venture with this country as a basis of operation._ It says,
further, that Justice and Metzler, Koenig’s secretary, left New York on
September 15, 1914, and went to Quebec; that Koenig left New York on
September 18 and met Metzler in Portland, Me., and that he went to
Burlington, Vt., where on September 25 he conferred with Justice. The
authorities also say that Metzler and Justice gained a varied assortment
of information in Quebec; that they inspected the fortifications there,
went to the training camps, observed the number of men, the condition of
the men and estimated the time when they would be sent to the front.


In his meetings with various persons who had been picked for some daring
enterprise, Koenig is accused of having employed various names. The
Federal authorities give him at least thirteen, among which are
Wegenkamp, Wegener, Kelly, Winter, Perkins, Stemler, Rectorberg, Boehm,
Kennedy, James, Smith, Murphy and W. T. Munday.

After indictments had been returned against some of the Hamburg-American
officials for conspiring to defraud the United States of legal clearance
papers, Koenig, assisted by a private detective in the pay of Captain
Boy-Ed, developed a scheme to get affidavits from tugboat captains to
the effect that they had supplied English war vessels patrolling off
Sandy Hook with provisions.

_The plan was to turn sentiment against the British by proving that the
British were doing the same thing that had been charged to the Germans._
Accordingly, Koenig called a number of tugboat captains to a room in the
Great Eastern Hotel, New York, and offered them a contract to haul
provisions to the English cruisers. He told them that the captains were
extremely suspicious of boats approaching the war vessels, and the
affidavits were necessary to allay their fears that the tugboats might
have a few Germans with bombs on board. So, in return for sworn
statements from them to the effect that they already had been carrying
supplies out to other English cruisers, he, Koenig, was to give them a
monthly contract to do the work. Many of the tugboat captains signed the
affidavits; but the scheme was exposed before the Germans really made
any use of the documents. So carefully did Koenig work that he made the
stenographers who took the statements transcribe the notes in his
presence, give him the shorthand notes and he immediately destroyed


Through the arrest of Koenig and the facts obtained thereby, one of the
mysteries concerning the Germans’ method of getting information about
the shipment of munitions of war to the Allies was cleared. _They knew
the number of the freight car rushing to the Atlantic seaboard and its
exact contents._ They knew the ship’s hold into which that product was
to be placed; but how they got this data was a mystery until Koenig was
caught. Then Metzler, Koenig’s secretary, made a confession that cleared
the mystery. Agent Adams got the confession.

Besides having spies in some of the factories throughout the country,
the Germans had one great fountain of information in the foreign
department of the National City Bank, an institution that has carried
hundreds of millions of dollars in financing the purchase of supplies
for the Entente Powers. That source was Frederick Schleindl, a German
who has since been convicted of selling stolen information and sentenced
to three years in a New York State prison.

Schleindl, only twenty-three years old, came to this country from
Germany several years ago, obtained work with a private banking firm,
and after the war started was shifted to the National City Bank. He had
influence to get the position, and, incidentally, it may be said, that
for years prior to the war German agents, trained financiers, have been
stationed in New York, making friends and learning conditions, so that
at the critical time they could, by underground means, succeed in
getting positions for such men as Schleindl who would betray their


When the war started Schleindl registered with the German Consul, giving
his address and his place of business. One day word reached him that a
German wished to see him, and going to the Hotel Manhattan he was
approached by a man who introduced himself as Koenig. The latter sounded
him thoroughly as to his sentiments on the war, and then outlined the
scheme by which Schleindl was to help Germany and make $25 a week.
Schleindl was to keep his eyes open for all letters and cable messages
bearing on the deposits of the Allies with the bank, the payments of
orders and other facts bearing on the war.

The bank clerk succumbed, either through patriotism or love of money.
And Koenig had placed his finger on exactly the right spot; so accurate
was he that there seems no doubt that he received guidance from a master
spy higher up, who knew banking operations thoroughly, and where to go
for information. It quickly developed that Schleindl could obtain
information of two very important kinds.

First, he received in his department cable messages bearing on war
orders and deposits by the Allies. The day he was arrested he had in his
pocket certain messages and letters addressed to the National City Bank.
One had come from the Banque Belge pour Etrangers in regard to a
shipment of two million rifles that was being handled through the Hudson
Trust Company. Another message that he picked up and handed over to
Koenig had come from the Russian Government, directing the bank to place
at the disposal of Colonel Golejewski, a Russian naval attaché, a large
amount of money for the purchase of war materials.

Secondly, the bank paid for orders of goods as soon as they had been
inspected and delivered on board ships at the seaboard. The
manufacturers sent their bills of lading to the bank, showing the
carload shipments and the vessel to which they were consigned. _Thus
accurate information was obtained as to every item, the railroad route
of shipment and the name of the vessel._ All this information was turned
over to Koenig, who passed it along for dissemination to the proper
persons. Consequently, _the Germans knew exactly what ships to attack;
in what vessels to place their fire bombs or other explosives_.

Schleindl was accustomed to meet Koenig almost every night and hand him
papers. Sometimes he would go to Koenig’s office, where “P. K.,” Metzler
and Schleindl would spend many hours copying the documents. Other times
Schleindl would give the papers to Koenig and receive them on his way to
work, so that they would be in their proper place the moment any bank
official desired them. _Koenig pleaded guilty in the Court of Special
Sessions to an information charging him with having corrupted the boy to
sell such information. Koenig was set free on a suspended sentence._

The National City Bank leak is only one of a hundred channels through
which Koenig and his agents received information. Koenig compiled it
with the aid of his secretary, conferred with von Papen or Boy-Ed. He
would spend a few weeks gathering facts, and then he would pack hundreds
of papers into a trunk and run down to Washington. Arriving there, he
would take a taxi to a rooming house, where he would unpack his trunk,
and put the contents into another trunk in an adjoining room.

As weeks went by and Koenig believed he was escaping police and Federal
espionage, he grew bolder, more defiant of the authorities, and louder
in his talk. He treated his employés with less consideration. He always
followed a principle of never hiring the same reservist for a second
job. Then he quarrelled with George Fuchs, a relative whom he had
employed to go to Buffalo with him. The police heard of that quarrel,
and quickly got into the confidence of Fuchs, obtained his confession,
and enough information on which to arrest Koenig. He has been indicted
by the Federal authorities twice on charges that may get him six years,
if convicted.

The two men were active workers for a time. Koenig continues in New
York, but von Igel sailed with Count Bernstorff when the latter was
dismissed from this country.