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Robert H. Jackson

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Robert Houghwout Jackson, 1892-1954.  Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court, 1941-1954; chief United States prosecutor, Nuremburg war crimes trials, 1945-1946.  Typed Letter Signed, Robert H. Jackson, one page, 7" x 9", on blind-embossed stationery of the The Solicitor General, Washington, [D.C.], September 4, 1939.  With original envelope.

This is a friendly note in which Jackson sends his autograph.  He writes:  “It is a matter of great interest to me that you were born in Chatauqua County, and in the territory which I know so well.  Most of the men of your acquaintance have passed away and a younger group is now active.  /  I am glad to have my autograph included in your collection."

A talented Democrat, Jackson practiced law, was active in politics, and served briefly in New York state government before Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt was elected president in 1932.  After he entered the White House, Roosevelt soon brought Jackson to Washington, D.C.  Jackson served successively as general counsel for the Internal Revenue Service (1934-1936), assistant attorney general (1936-1937), Solicitor General (1938-1940), and Attorney General (1940-1941).

When Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes retired in 1941, Roosevelt promoted Associate Justice Harlan Fiske Stone to chief justice and appointed Jackson an associate justice.  Jackson remained on the Supreme Court until his death in 1954. His opinions are some of the most eloquent in the Court's history.

After World War II, Jackson helped to establish a new principle of international law:  that those who commit war crimes or crimes against humanity can be tried and held personally accountable by an international tribunal.  For months, Jackson met with representatives of Great Britain, France, and the Soviet Union to draft the charter and establish the procedure for the Nuremburg war crimes tribunal.  Once the tribunal convened, Jackson served as the chief United States prosecutor.

Jackson has boldly signed this letter in blue fountain pen.  This letter has one normal mailing fold, which does not affect the signature.  A small stain from the integral leaf bleeds onto the first page of the letter beneath, but not touching, Jacksons signature.  The envelope shows normal wear, and it bears the notation "Justice Jackson" on the back in another hand. Overall the letter and envelope are in fine condition.




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