Vanzetti's Last Statement

By Bartolomeo Vanzetti

Entry 1574


From: holdoffhunger [id: 1]


Revolt Library Anarchism Vanzetti's Last Statement

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(1888 - 1927)

Italian Anarchist Activist and Martyr of the State

: After they returned the two became more active in the anarchist community. Vanzetti began reading about industrial society and revolt and both began distributing anarchist and revolutionary literature. (From: Anarchy Archives.)
• "That was a sad year. What toiler does not remember it? The poor slept outdoors and rummaged the garbage barrels to find a cabbage leaf or a rotten potato. For three months I searched New York, its length and its breadth, without finding work." (From: "The Story of a Proletarian Life," by Bartolomeo V....)
• "Nameless, in the crowd of nameless ones, I have merely caught and reflected a little of the light from that dynamic thought or ideal which is drawing humanity towards better destinies." (From: "The Story of a Proletarian Life," by Bartolomeo V....)
• "Judge Webster Thayer, the same man who later presided at the murder trial imposed the sentence. There was not a vibration of sympathy in his tone when he did so. I wondered as I listened to him, why he hated me so. Is not a judge supposed to be impartial? But now I think I know - I must have looked like a strange animal to him, being a plain worker, an alien, and a radical to boot. And why was it that all my witnesses, simple people who were anxious to tell the simple truth, were laughed at and disregarded? No credence was given their words because they, too, were merely aliens...." (From: "The Story of a Proletarian Life," by Bartolomeo V....)

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Vanzetti's Last Statement

 Photo by Luca Russo, CC BY-NC-ND License

Photo by Luca Russo,
CC BY-NC-ND License

This arrangement of Vanzetti's speech first appeared in Labor Action.

I have talk a great deal of myself but I even forget to name Sacco. Sacco too is a worker, from his boyhood a skilled worker, lover of work with a good job and pay, a bank account, a good and lovely wife, two beautiful children and a neat little home at the verge of a wood, near a brook. Sacco is a heart, a faith, a character, a man; a man, lover of nature, and mankind. A man who gave all, who sacrifice all to the cause of liberty and to his love for mankind: money, rest, mundane ambition, his own wife, children, himself and his own life.

Sacco has never dreamed to steal, never to assassinate. He and I have never brought a morsel of bread to our mouths, from our childhood to today which has not been gained by the sweat of our brows. Never...

Oh yes, I may be more witfull, as some have put it; I am a better babbler than he is, but many, many times in hearing his heartfull voice ringing forth sublime, in considering his supreme sacrifice, remembering his heroism I felt small at the presence of his greatness and found myself compelled to fight back from my eyes the tears, and quench my heart trobling to my throat to not weep before him: this man called thief and assassin and doomed. But Sacco's name will live in the hearts of the people and in their gratitude when Katzmann's bones and yours will be dispersed by time; when your name, his name, your laws, constitutions and your false god are but a dim remembering of a cursed past in which man was wolf to the man...

If it had not been for these thing I might have lived out my life talking at street corners to scorning men. I might have die, unmarked, unknown, a failure. Now we are not a failure.

This is our career and our triumph. Never in our full life could we hope to do such work for tolerance, for justice, for men's understanding of man, as now we do by accident. Our words, our lives, our pains - nothing! The taking of our lives - lives of a good shoemaker and a poor fishpeddler - all! That last moment belongs to us - that agony is our triumph.

From : Anarchy Archives


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