Dreyfus Affair

Alfred Dreyfus
The Bordereau
French 120 mm Gun
Maximilian von Schwartzkoppen
Military Attache German Embassy
• Bordereau found in his trash can
by Madame Bastian - French Spy
in German Embassy
• Addressed to Colonel von
Schwartzkoppen Gay –
– Also Wrote to lover Italian
Military Attache—Major
Allesandro Panizzardi in coded
– “the scoundrel of a D…”
• Reference to Dreyfus or ..
– Offered “plans of Nice”
– “Don’t exhaust yourself with too
much buggery”
• Letter submitted to judges as part
of “secret dossier” along with
Madame Marie Caudron Bastian
Alphonse Bertillon Criminologist
• Suspect had to be an
artillary officer
• Dreyfus made regular
visits to family (from
Alsace—now German)
• Criminologist Bertillon
testified that the LACK
of resemblance
between Dreyfus
writing and Bordereau
proof of “self-forgery”
Drumont – Publishes article on Dreyfus
– October 31, 1894
Dreyfus Secret Court Martial
Guilty of Treason December 22, 1894
Degradation Ceremony – January 5 1895
Affair Becomes a Media Affair
Dreyfus in Prison
Madame Bastion Continues to Collect
• All intelligence to go to
Major Henry until
• Colonel Georges Picquart is
chosen as new Chief of
• Picquart wants all
espionage before Henry
gets it
• Reveals little except that
espionage didn’t stop with
Dreyfus’ arrest
Col. Picquart Shows “Le Petit Bleu”
written by Esterhazy - 1896
• Adam Gopnik:
– Esterhazy “had done
everything short of
wearing a nametag on his
shirtfront reading ‘Spy.’”
• Gambling Debts
• Debauched son of an
Illegitimate daughter of an
illegitimate claimant to the
Hungarian throne
• Written to mistress that he
hated the French Army
• Notorious for being a drunk
– He was everything Zola
would find in the most
Cover Up Begins
• Word of Esterhazy-Panizzardi letter gets out
• Lucie Dreyfus calls for reopening case
• General de Boisdeffre transfers Picquart to
Tunis in North Africa
• Eventually, Piquart gets his story to Senator
Auguste Scheurer-Kestner, who is convinced
Dreyfus innocent
Colonel Henry and His “Faux Henry” 1896
The Plot Thickens
• War Minister General
Billot –forces Esterhazy
to retire
• Billot, Col. Henry, and
Officer Paty de Clam
(left) –warn Esterhazy
of suspicions
• Esterhazy meets Paty de
Clam in disguise in a
park-Paty de Clam says
he will support him
Bernard Lazare Tells all to Zola – Nov.
• Mathieu Dreyfus begins
to publish case for
Dreyfus innocence –
gets bordereau
published in Newspaper
• Mr. de Castro,
Esterhazy’s South
American stock broker
recognizes writing and
contacts Mathieu
Mathieu Dreyfus and Scheurer-Kestner
get Together
“The Affair” Blows Up
• November 1897 – after conversation with
Scheurer-Kestner- Mathiew Dreyfus writes
letter to Minister of War
• Army recalls Picquart but keeps him under
• Le figaro begins to publish Esterhazy’s letters
to his mistress
“The Affair”
• December 4 – Chamber
of Deputies reaffirms
Dreyfus’s guilt
• Jules Meline – Premier:
“there is no Dreyfus
• December 11 – Ravery
Inquiry concludes there
is not enough evidence
to pursue Esterhazy
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