Amsterdam: 1943. Amsterdam: dated 1941 [actually, 1943]. ALS on lined prison stationary, marked 'S.G.S. 8105-1942’. 29 lines, written in pencil. Addressed to “Eep” [Marius Roland Holst], and signed “Tiky.” One line blacked out, likely by a censor. With an accompanying letter by Willem Sandberg to Roland Holst about the damage done to it by the 'tentoonstellers' (='exhibitors'), dated September 15, 1945. With Sandberg's envelope and an original photo of Arondéus, reproduced from a larger photo, and related ephemera including 7 contemporary news clippings related to his imprisonment and execution, an issue of the rare underground Dutch Resistance newspaper De Vrue Kunstenaar, with a notice of his death, and two prospectuses for publications by Arondeus.
One of the final letters written by Arondeus, only four days before he was executed by the Nazis for his participation in the fire-bombing of the Amsterdam public records office, an action taken in order to make it more difficult for the Nazi's to track down the indentity of Jews in the Netherlands for deportation to concentration camps.
Willem used his last words before his execution to state that he wanted to show that Homosexuals were not cowards.
This year marks the 75th anniversary of this courageous act.
The letter is transcribed in Rudi van Dantzig's book "Het Leven Van Willem Aroundéus 1894-1943", p. 443. It is the next to last letter published in the book, followed only by a letter written a half hour later. van Dantzig was not able to transcribe the censored section, but it is our hope that some future institution or owner may be able to use a forensic method to recapture the missing line.
An incredibly important cache from the perspective of resistance to fascism, LGBTQ history, and the history of the human responses and costs of surveillance.
Toning and creasing. Very good. Item #26586