LEE HARVEY OSWALD
(1939 - 1963) American assassin of President John F. Kennedy who Oswald shot in Dallas, November 22, 1963. Oswald was in turn murdered by nightclub owner Jack Ruby days later. OSWALD ASKS GUS HALL FOR MEMBERSHIP IN THE COMMUNIST PARTY An incredible content letter from assassin Oswald to the leaders of the Communist Party USA expressing his desire to join them to share in their "trails and tribulations". Oswald''s letter, 1p. 8vo., is undated but sent from "P.O. Box 2915 Dallas, Tx", the box Oswald rented on Oct. 9, 1962 and the same box at which he received the Kennedy murder weapon in March, 1963. His letter is addressed to party leaders Gus Hall and Elizabeth Gurley Flynn at the party''s mailing address in New York. In part: "...I have followed the activies [sic] of the C.P. for the last few years, and I have decided that it is very timely and correct for me at this time to apply for membership in the Communist party of the U.S. I wish to become a member so that I may share, as fully as is possible, your trails [sic] and tribulations, as well as your glories and victories...". Very fine condition. GUS HALL (1910-2000), then General Secretary, was a leader and chairman of the Communist Party USA and its four-time U.S. presidential candidate. During the Second Red Scare, Hall was indicted under the Smith Act and was sentenced to eight years in prison. After his release, he led the Communists for over 40 years. ELIZABETH GURLEY FLYNN (1890-1964) was a labor leader, activist, and feminist who played a leading role in the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). Flynn was a founding member of the ACLU and a vocal proponent of women''s rights, birth control, and women''s suffrage. She joined the Communist Party USA in 1936 and late in life, in 1961, became its chairwoman. Oswald was rejected, as Hall suspected he was a government "plant". After Kennedy''s murder, Hall never surrendered the letter to the Warren Commission, as he feared that the commission''s wide-ranging powers would be used to tear the party apart. He did, however, preserve the letter in his estate. The letter was purchased by our consignor several years ago. Sold with a vintage AP print of Gus Hall, "Party Man," taken by Marcia Keegan, July 26, 1973; and a recent print of Oswald being shot by Jack Ruby, signed in ink by former Dallas police detective James Leavelle, who was leading the prisoner through the basement of Dallas Police Headquarters at the time he was killed. Three pieces.