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    [Frank James]. John Newman Edwards Autograph Letter Signed "J. N. Edwards." Two pages, 5.5" x 11", St. Joseph [Missouri], October 17, 1883. Nearly two months since his acquittal on charges of murder during an 1881 robbery, Frank James was still in jail at Gallatin, as further charges were pending, for instance, a federal robbery charge from Alabama. Edwards, a close friend of James', has written that he is back from "...Lafayette and Jackson Counties," presumably collecting money on Frank's behalf: "I am now prepared to say that you can give any amount of bail that the court may fix."

    He urges him to "Write me the exact status of affairs in Gallatin. I read in a paper that a change of venue had been asked for. When will that question be settled, and where will you go to for the next trial? I went especially to Kansas City to find out about the Mussel [Muscle] Shoals business. I could learn nothing as to the intentions of the federal government. I could hear of no indictment." By February of 1884, Frank was in Alabama, again in jail and awaiting arraignment on federal robbery charges from the "Mussel Shoals business." After a ten day trial (which started in April), Frank was found not guilty.

    On the verso, Edwards has placed a postscript: "You have seen the card I wrote about your surrender. It had to be done for this reason. Every wolf on your track was lying against Gov. Crittenden, in order to poison him against you...Hence, it was but simple justice to you and him to make the statement I did. Whatever I done with an your interests. As for myself...I shall stay till the end."

    With the original transmittal envelope. Upon the envelope, Frank James has written the words, "Will stay to the end," possibly echoing the final words of the letter. Folds; slight separation at the intersection. Light ink bleed-through from the verso.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2013
    22nd-23rd Saturday-Sunday
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