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The Tell-Tale Blotter

  • Drama
  • 1909


This story is a strange and interesting study of circumstantial evidence. It concerns two young men who are rivals for the hand of a merchant's daughter. The successful suitor is a trusted employee of the merchant. The rejected suitor commits a robbery and then tries to fasten the crime on his rival. He is, however, outwitted by the merchant's daughter, who, by a woman's intuition, discovers circumstantial evidence of the crime by means of a blotter. Then the use of hypnotism is brought forward in order to secure a confession from the culprit. She succeeds in fastening the guilt where it belongs. The opening scene portrays the engagement of the lovers and the anger of the rejected suitor. Then the official of the merchant, who is about to go upon a journey, entrusts the combination of his safe to his future son-in-law. In doing this he writes the combination on a slip of paper; then dries the ink with a blotter, which he thoughtlessly casts aside. The blotter, of course, takes the impression of the combination. The rejected suitor finds this blotter, opens the safe and steals the funds, which he hides in his bedroom. The other scenes show us the ingenuous detective work of the daughter and how she secures the aid of a celebrated hypnotic physician, who hypnotizes the culprit, and. like Mathias in "The Bells," the guilty man is made to act over again the details of his crime.

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