ALS signed “Bartolomeo V.,” three pages on two sheets, 6 x 9.5, June 18, 1924. Letter to John and Virginia G. Bournan of Stephen City, Virginia. In full: "Your fraternal missive, sent for my birthday, has reach me just in time and in good company. I appreciate it and I am grateful to you for all that I realize that is beyond it. Justice must be done, my friends, and greater and greater will be the sacrifice of the lovers of liberty till her final triumph. My judiciary adventure was so vulgar, barefaced and evidently a premeditated legal murder—that to chained and killed from it—is something unspeakable. And yet, after having spended for years in prison and over $200,000 we are still as near to the electric chair as we were when pronounced guilty. They do what they like and they were rendered so unconscious and degenerated by the deadly consequences and influences of their education, office and environment that only fear—the fear for the only three things which they hold as sacred: their purse; their power; and their skin—can stop them to satisfy they ferocy and greed—by any sort of offence and violences to the lovers of freedom and their old folks, women and children.
Where not for your help and solidarity—for the world wide solidarity and protest—Nick and I would have been burn alive long ago. But, just for this help they may not dare to kill us little by little with chains' torture. Well I have decide—if it will be so—to live at least 125 years—and I want you, too, to keep along—We are the warriors of life—and we must live—live long and godlike for life's and ours victory. I knew of the terrible reaction acting in California—but I hope that a good campaigne will begin for the liberty of all. Now, soon the bell will ring, so I my close and I will close, my dear John and my dear Virginia by clasping your hands fraternally and with a strong shake I send to you my most hearty regards and sentiments." In fine condition. Accompanied by an address panel accomplished in Vanzetti's hand.
In the famed Sacco and Vanzetti case, the anarchists Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti were convicted of killing a guard and paymaster during the 1920 armed robbery of the Slater and Morrill Shoe Company in South Braintree, Massachusetts. Vehemently proclaiming their innocence, the pair soon became the center of a worldwide cause celebre in which many prominent writers, artists, and academics pleaded for their pardon or a new trial. Despite years of motions and appeals, the men were put to death in the electric chair on August 23, 1927.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.